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Events Post-Pandemic: Roadmap Update

Bar, Event
01 March 2021

The roadmap’s release has encouraged announcements across the board in the live events market. From Step 3 of the 4 Step process, managers, promoters and performers will have the opportunity to re-engage in business, at first with limitations similar to those seen last year in the industry.

Before proceeding to each of the next steps, the government will examine the data to assess the impact of previous steps and readiness to move on.

This assessment will be based on four tests:

  • The vaccine deployment programme continues successfully.
  • Evidence shows vaccines are sufficiently effective in reducing hospitalisations and deaths in those vaccinated.
  • Infection rates do not risk a surge in hospitalisations which would put unsustainable pressure on the NHS.
  • Assessment of the risks is not fundamentally changed by new Variants of Concern.

If it is deemed safe to continue, socially distanced events of either 1000 people or half the capacity will be permitted from 17 May at the earliest, or at least 5 weeks after Step 2 is implemented.



Picture: Step 3 of the official COVID-19 Roadmap.


What Next for Events?

This is obviously extremely constructive news for the industry after a year of set backs. Networking events such as TWinFM's Facilties & Workplace Networking Club are an especially enjoyable and important part of FM business, enabling natural partnerships to form. Restrictions during Step 3 will heavily resemble those seen with Tier 2 specifications until 24 June at the earliest, when the situation will be reviewed in regards to Step 4. At this point it is hoped that all social distancing regulations and capacity limits will be lifted. There is no guarantee that this will be the case, and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport will be running pilot events in April during Step 2, to explore how they can maximise attendance of large scale events safely, using some of the methods described and theorised in our full article.

Occasions such as our Summer River Boat Party will therefore benefit from a renewed sense of celebration, along with other events quickly beginning to populate the calendar via announcements. Several music festivals have sold out bringing high hopes for getting production underway and securing many contracts to enact this and run the operations. The fact remains that there are no government backed insurance policies regarding the termination of these, if there is to be a retreat into restrictions after June.



Picture: Step 4 of the official COVID-19 Roadmap.


Space to Relax


Post-COVID 19, many organisations cosidering CSR may choose to continue precautionary measures or opt to uphold schemes perviously used to keep people comfortable and feeling safe, especially as we readjust and address the pandemic induced anxiety in 2021.

Social distancing, as described in the full article analysing events the practicalities of social events moving forwards, could be enforced in some circumstances, particularly where infrastructure has been adapted. However, on the most part it is likely that companies will encourage initiatives that bring people together again and increase morale. So how else can people be given health security when interacting with different people?


Continuous COVID Surveillance


Testing on entry, or before attendance, is a simple way to give peace of mind. Lateral flow tests that can return results within 30 minutes are currently used by businesses across the board daily, due to their low cost and low effort. However, in a prime example of their accuracy, Professor Jon Deeks argues that the Innova lateral flow test is not fit for purpose for any form of mass testing, citing the Liverpool pilot study. In this study, 60 per cent of infected symptomless people went undetected, including 33 per cent of those with high viral loads who are at highest risk of infecting others.

The pressure of having to turn people away that have not completed a negative test may cause unpleasantry for organisers, security personnel and the guests themselves. Although people have shown a great willingness to comply with measures that safeguard the vulnerable, some may be frustrated and keen to return to previous ways. Health Passports, as digital records of vaccinations and perhaps other medical information, have been proposed as tickets for enabling international travel and larger gatherings. This level of gatekeeping has been deemed controversial as a method of control, but could appear more ideal in a future society considering more or worse pandemic issues.

For now the opportunities of this year look bright with a steady incline for those that thrive on business in person. See the full article at the link below, Events Post-Pandemic, for a more in depth review of how COVID-19 has been and will continue to be nagivated in the events industry.


Learn more: Events Post-Pandemic Full Feature

Picture: drinks on a bar at a busy social event.




Article written by Bailey Sparkes | Published 01 March 2021


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