Music has been credited by U.K. collecting society PRS For Music as a key factor in helping the British pubs and bars stay afloat during the current financial recession.

According to research released by PRS For Music in association with pub data specialists CGA, U.K. bars that featured music, both live and recorded, take on average 44% more revenue than pubs that feature none. This figure rises to 60% on weekends, says PRS For Music.

The report went on to state that live music is the greatest draw for U.K. drinkers with 24% of publicans increasing their takings by 25% to 50% on nights when they have live music; and 71% reporting an increase of 10% to 25%.

U.K. pubs and bars have been particularly hard hit by the current recession with 24,000 jobs lost in the last year and 2,377 pubs having closed their doors in the last 12 months, according to figures released by the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA).

To coincide with the report's publication, PRS For Music has launched a promotional campaign, in partnership with the Musicians' Union BBPA, aimed at helping U.K. pubs and bars to maximize the business benefits of featuring live and recorded music.

Entitled "Music Makeover," the campaign will see advice packs sent out to 45,000 pubs nationwide throughout 2010, as well as a competition whereby two pubs will be selected to receive £5,000 ($8,200) in funding from PRS For Music. Umbrella trade body U.K. Music's CEO Feargal Sharkey is included among the judges on the selection panel.

"Music helps businesses grow and keeps customers coming back, even in a downturn," Debbie Mulloy, director public performance sales, PRS for Music, said in a statement. "We want to make sure the pub industry is getting all the benefit it can from using music, because grassroots venues like pubs and clubs are vital to the music industry," she went on to say.

Praising U.K. pubs for the "vital role" they play in many musicians' careers, Horace Trubridge of the Musicians' Union added: "Demonstrating how music can really benefit pubs underlines how intertwined the two industries are. We need to protect and support the pub sector and the live music scene as they are both such an integral part of the UK cultural scene."