UK events industry faces huge losses if COVID restrictions remain: Report – POLITICOPOLI


According to an internal economic impact assessment carried out by the UK Government’s Event Research Program and taken from POLITICO’s London Playbook, if even the most minimal coronavirus restrictions persist beyond July 19, England’s events industry will be ravaged by enormous losses.

The events research program used a series of pilots to test a range of potential actions for the events industry in the fourth and final step of UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s pandemic reopening plan, evaluating three scenarios.

In a “high intervention” scenario with mandatory face masks for a maximum of two hours, COVID certification (with vaccination or negative test result), attendance limits, and a ban on serving food or drinks, the events industry would see average sales of just 69 percent of the level of 2019. Halls with seats such as theaters would generate only 59 percent of their sales in 2019. Indoor spaces without seats, such as nightclubs, would do even worse at 37 percent.

“Medium intervention restrictions”, which provide for a two-hour mask requirement for guests, a COVID certification and a ban on serving alcohol, but no upper attendance limits, would mean that the industry achieved an average of 78 percent of its sales in 2019.

Even a “low-intrusion” scenario where guests only have to wear face masks would still have a significant impact as the industry would achieve 82 percent of its total sales in 2019 and halls with no seats only 65 percent.

The government has not yet published the results of the event research program.

Whitehall officials confirmed Tuesday night to the London Playbook that these economic concerns, as well as improvements in health data, mean the government is now lifting almost all measures for the next month. Ministers are also considering lifting all restrictions, including face masks, a government official said.