Covid-19: Events Sector

Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy – in the House of Commons on 21st July 2020.

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Photo of Andrew Slaughter Andrew Slaughter Labour, Hammersmith

What steps he is taking to help the events sector recover from the covid-19 pandemic.

Photo of Paul Scully Paul Scully Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy), Minister of State (London)

As the Prime Minister announced last week, from 1 October the Government intend to allow audiences to return to stadiums around the country. Conferences and other business events can also recommence in a covid-19 secure way, subject to the outcome of pilots.

Photo of Andrew Slaughter Andrew Slaughter Labour, Hammersmith

The Government are really missing the point on this. The thing about events, meetings, conferences, exhibitions and wedding receptions is that they are organised and regulated, and yet they are more constrained at the moment than pubs and restaurants. Rather than talk about pilots and permitted venues that are not defined in the guidance, will the Government look at a faster and fuller opening of the sector before October?

Photo of Paul Scully Paul Scully Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy), Minister of State (London)

We took evidence from a number of areas, including the wedding industry, and we have the “Safer Events: A Framework for Action” White Paper. All those people will feed into that discussion. Weddings are essentially parties, and we need to ensure that they can be regulated in a covid-19-secure way. I will meet the wedding industry associations again tomorrow to continue discussions in this area.