the media and entertainment union
a sector of Prospect

8 April 2009

New recommended going rates for freelance sound professionals are being published today (Wednesday 8 April).

The new rates secured the backing of 97 per cent of BECTU members who took part in the consultation exercise which closed last week.

The new guidance, effective from 1 April,  has been designed for use by sound operators across the country and gives information on rates including and excluding holiday pay.

A substantial amount of work has been done by members in BECTU's Sound branch and by members working in sound outside London and the South East, to produce the new document.

Cross-industry consultation has also drawn on the energetic input of the Association of Motion Picture Sound (AMPS), many of whose members are also members of BECTU.

"With the publication and circulation of the new rates we have reached a milestone," commented Tony Norton, national official.

"These new rates will help to ensure that sound professionals are better rewarded for the work they do after a period of some 8-9 years where rates have been driven down due to new technology.

"Our work to achieve the overwhelming consensus we now have should help to restore parity with colleagues in the camera department.

 "We also want to build on this achievement to improve on our support for freelances working in sound," Tony Norton concluded. 

The new rates cover production in TV drama, TV factual and documentaries, low budget and major features, commercials, TV studios and outside broadcasts and live events. Recommended rates are also given for work in the corporate sector.

The document - Freelance Sound Rates April 2009 - can also be accessed from the Document Libary at