A BUILDING supplies firm is throwing its weight behind a UK-wide search to find the next Ed Sheeran or the UK’s answer to Taylor Swift.

Howarth Timber and Building Supplies, which has an office in Bury is backing Local Music Live, a new initiative aimed at putting new talent on the air. Local Music Live brings together commercial and community stations – including Bolton FM as well as Rock FM in Lancashire, the Lincs FM group and the newly-launched Fix Radio in London – to encourage and support local singers and bands.

John Dash of Local Music Live said: ‘Radio stations, especially those with a strong ‘local’ ethos, have always had a close relationship with their local music scenes, so it’s great to see so many stations on board to support this campaign.’

Local Music Live’s Dave Stankler said: “We believe this is the first time the radio industry has seen commercial, DAB and community stations come together for a major radio initiative, and we see this being the first of many for LRN stations.”

Under the initiative, singer/songwriters and bands can submit their songs to localmusiclive.org for a chance to be played by local radio DJs from across the UK. The website also provides a forum for artists to share information and promote their music.

Howarth Timber’s Bury branch will choose the best act from the area, with Local Music Live and Howarth Timber then picking their favourite act in the UK and giving them a platform to gain a greater audience for their music. The chosen artist or band will be given the opportunity to record their music at Redwall Studios in Greater Manchester, and create a music video for one of their tracks.

Howarth Timber’s marketing and product development manager, Neale Brewster, said: “We’re always keen to get involved and support our local communities, whether that’s through our charity activities or sponsoring local gigs so this is a great way to extend that support. We’re very proud to provide a platform for emerging talent and we’re looking forward to discovering the next big thing in local music.”

For more details on Howarth Timber please visit www.howarth-timber.co.uk