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The Government will work with event organisers and local authorities to get fans safely in to around a dozen events this Spring as part of its science-led Events Research Programme (ERP).
The ERP will be used to provide key scientific data into how small and large-scale events could be permitted to safely reopen in line with the Prime Minister’s Roadmap out of lockdown as part of Step 4, commencing no earlier than June 21.
This review will be crucial to how venues – from major sport stadiums to comedy clubs, theatres to live music spaces, wedding venues to conference centres – could operate this summer.
It will be key to allowing the British public to get back safely in large numbers to doing some of the things they love.
“I’m pleased that Liverpool will be playing a key role in this vital research to help understand how audiences can safely return to events such as sport, theatre and gigs.
“Our city region is famed for its sports, hospitality and leisure sectors and visitor economy, which are worth over £5billion a year and support over 50,000 jobs.
“Re-starting this sector safely is not only fundamental to our economic recovery but also to our collective wellbeing, as we are hopefully able to start re-connecting with each other socially in the coming weeks and months.”
“Liverpool is an event city. They are a critical part of our economy, culture and community and so we are delighted to be working with partners across Government, our colleagues at University of Liverpool and a number of local venues and promoters to plan this series of pilot events.
“Our experience as the pilot city for mass testing means we have the knowledge and infrastructure in place to deliver complicated projects safely, and we really hope we can help provide the evidence needed to ensure the wider sector is able to open across the country in the coming months.”
Settings will include small indoor venues that have a capacity of circa 200 people, where a gig or comedy night would take place, to large outdoor venues such as Wembley stadium.
Decisions on the number of spectators allowed into the pilot events are yet to be taken and will be subject to discussions with event organisers and local authorities.
As well as Liverpool, London and Sheffield will also be part of the pilot programme with test events being lined up to happen at a nightclub, comedy club and business events venue.
The evidence will then be shared across the event economy so that venues can prepare to accommodate fuller audiences.
“These test events will be crucial in finding ways to get fans and audiences back in safely without social distancing.
“We will be guided by the science and medical experts, but will work flat out to make that happen. We want to get the people back to enjoying what they love and ensure some of our most important growth industries get back on their feet.
“These are important steps towards the safe and special summer we all crave and that I’m fully focused on delivering.”
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