As the U.K. continues to phase out of coronavirus lockdown, it’s slowly starting to bring back aspects of normal life. This includes live music. Now, it looks like outdoor concerts are officially resuming in the U.K. this weekend.
The government has confirmed that outdoor events, concerts and festivals can resume as of July 11. However, the government does have plans in place to keep all attendees safe.
At the start of July, it was announced that the U.K.’s first socially-distant arena is being built in Newcastle. With isolated viewing platforms and a socially-distant parking lot, the 2,500 capacity Virgin Money Unity Arena is the first of its kind in the U.K.
Now, the U.K. government says all outdoor events can resume this weekend. However, the government is introducing a “five-stage” roadmap to safely bring back live performances. As well, it will host various “test events” to ensure all safety measures are met.
Over the course of the next few months, various small indoor “test events” are taking place. This is to help with the future reopening of venues. The “test events” include a performance by the London Symphony Orchestra at St. Luke’s Church, as well as performances at the London Palladium and at Butlin’s holiday parks.
Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden detailed the plans in a televised Downing Street briefing on Thursday. He notes that the move is “an important milestone for our performing artists, who have been waiting patiently in the wings since March.”
Starting July 11, all venues can start hosting live outdoor events. However, social-distancing measures must be implemented.
“Of course we won’t see crowds flooding into their venues, but from July 11 our theatres, operas, dance and music shows can start putting on outdoor performances to socially distant audiences,” Dowden says.
Other safety measures will be implemented as venues reopen. Outdoor event capacities will be reduced to accommodate social-distancing measures. As well, venues will use electronic ticketing and keep visitor records.
On July 5, the U.K. government announced a £1.57billion ($3.2 billion) support package for its art industries. The money includes emergency loans and grants for arts, culture and heritage institutions and organizations that have been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
As cases continue to spike in the U.S., various virtual live events and drive-in style concerts are happening. This weekend, Andrew McMahon is performing two shows at Drive-In OC. McMahon is playing Jack’s Mannequin‘s Everything In Transit in full in celebration of its 15-year anniversary. His Saturday, July 11 performance is also being livestreamed. All tickets sold for the livesteam will benefit the Dear Jack Foundation.
All of the U.K.’s plans to resume outdoor events are available to read here.
What are your thoughts on the U.K. resuming outdoor events? Let us know in the comments below!