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Pilot scheme for live events to take place in next few weeks

The Government has published further information on the Events Research Programme, put in place to inform decisions for the sector on certification, social distancing, international travel and restarting live events to the wider population.

The aim of the research is to determine how a combination of testing and Covid secure management can inform decisions on safely lifting restrictions at events.

The key points in the update are that:

  • the first phase of 10-15 pilots are being held in April and May to inform decisions on the safe removal of social distancing from Step 4
  • The pilots will be run across a range of settings, venue types, and activity types so that findings could support the full reopening of similar settings across multiple sectors
  • The programme is overseen by an industry-led steering group cochaired by Sir Nicholas Hytner and David Ross and working closely with national and local public health authorities.
  • A Joint Programme Board will work across government to inform policy development on reopening sectors ahead of Step 4
  • The ERP will look at a range of mitigating factors including test-onentry protocols for use in determining how we can reopen larger venues safely
  • The first pilot events are ▪ B FA Cup Semi Final, Wembley Stadium ▪ World Snooker Championship, Sheffield Crucible Theatre ▪ Luna Cinema, Liverpool ▪ League Cup Final ▪ ACC Business Event, Liverpool ▪ Circus Nightclub, Liverpool ▪ FA Cup Final, Wembley Stadium ▪ Outdoor gig, Sefton Park Liverpool
  • Findings will be reported to the Prime Minister to feed into wider discussions around Step 4 of the lockdown restrictions.

The Government has selected events based on settings that cover a range of criteria, including different audience capacities, outdoor and indoor venues and different layouts. All pilots will be designed in a scientifically controlled way, with special consideration to reduce risk of transmission.

Entry will be subject to a negative test result. In practice this will work in much the same way that international travel has taken place in recent months – entry will be denied to those that cannot provide evidence of a negative test result.

The ERP will look at a range of mitigating factors including test-on-entry protocols for use in determining how they can reopen larger venues safely.

To read the guidance in full, click here.