BVEP - Business Visits and Events Partnership

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One Industry One Voice - Supporters Update (21.05.2021)

With the Event Research Programme well underway examining a variety of settings and behaviours and the arrival this week of Step 3 in the road map, you’d be forgiven for wondering which messages you should currently be paying attention to. More alarmingly you might be wondering where the race between vaccination and variants is going to end up in relation to the complete lifting of restrictions planned for the 21st June 2021.

As ever the OIOV Taskforce has been working hard to navigate the tsunami of information, guidance and data that is threatening to engulf us all – so hopefully this weekly fix of cross industry focussed facts and issues will be worth you spending some of your valuable time reading. Please feel free to share widely too – keeping everyone on the same page in terms of the very latest developments has never been more important.

Clear and consistent communication
The mixed messages around the relaxation of restrictions in England, linked to the impact of the Indian variant and the new international travel regime have once again had an immediate impact on confidence in some sectors of the event industry, with some planned events losing sponsors worried about the possible delay of the June re-start date. In contrast Live published their ReviveLive consumer research, which gave over 25,000 music fans the chance to demonstrate how keen they are to return to live music events. The full report is available here. Well worth a read if you are looking to see how confident music fans are about returning to live events as soon as possible – some 73% had already bought tickets since March!

This evidence of consumer confidence was bolstered by the comments made last week by the DCMS Secretary of State Oliver Dowden during a select committee meeting, when he indicated that if events still cannot go ahead by stage four of the roadmap because of market failure with commercial insurance, the government would intervene. The recent
formation of an ‘Events Indemnity Sprint Group’, which has been tasked by the government with finding solutions to the issue of events insurance, is further evidence that the argument for intervention is finally gaining traction. There is no doubt from the discussions held in the OIOV Taskforce meetings that this remains one of the key issues that the whole industry needs to see a positive result on, sooner rather than later. It is clear that whatever arrangements are finally agreed need to be in place well before 21st June and there remains a lot of scepticism about how feasible this will be.

ERP updates
Any such decision would be taken in association with the outcome of the pilot events involved in the ERP, including some new phase 2 pilots that are currently being confirmed. Results so far from the programme appear to be very good, with 13,000 people involved in the series of events recently held in Liverpool and only 12 positive Covid cases being reported, far below the national average. In fact some of those positive tests were only identified because they were participating in the events and the testing regime picked them up – so an unintended consequence that is worth noting as Covid certification protocols are examined as a way of safeguarding events of all types.

It appears that the intention is to use the first phase of ERP events to provide a report by the end of the month as planned and that the new phase 2 pilots will be used to add to the data collated across all ERP activity. Focus of phase 2 appears to be large scale events, including sports events such as racing and rugby. Positive feedback was also received from the Brits, held at the O2.

Supply Chain Issues
It is apparent that the easing of restrictions associated with step 3 has also seen an uptick in event activity, with a range of events scheduled over the next few weeks across the four nations. There is still widespread concern about the number of people that have been forced to leave the industry in order to secure paid employment in other sectors and the impact this will have as demand increases. The hotel sector is facing similar challenges, particularly where previous staffing and service levels were frequently supported by European nationals who have now left the UK.

Protect Duty Consultation
The UKCMA have already undertaken research into the skills/staff shortage as a result of Covid-19 and at this week’s OIOV meeting introduced the Protect Duty Consultation. The results of this consultation process will have financial and operational implications for many areas in the industry and OIOV are happy to support the call for submissions on this critical issue.

University of Sussex Research Programme - request for event professional participants with £20 reward! The event department at University of Surrey (No.1 in Europe) are conducting research looking at diversity and inclusion of the UK event industry. They are looking for UK event organisers to support the study and participate in a research interview to understand more how event organisers perceive barriers and challenges in running more diverse and inclusive events. Attached here is a Participant Information Sheet for your information, please feel free to contact them direct and ask them any questions. If you think you can help by participating in the research interviews, that would be amazing. The interview would take place via telephone call or Microsoft Teams at a suitable time in the next two weeks. The interview may take up to one hour. To thank you for your time and kind support, after successful completion of your interview, they will provide you £20 Amazon voucher or donate £20 to a charity of your choice - see poster and participant info attached – please do circulate amongst your teams/network asap.

Campaign Priority Round Up
NTIA – still concerned regarding the current CRF round and how funds not yet allocated.

Useful links

Protect Duty consultation - UKCMA advice and guidance to members
SIA & Security in events- updates- stakeholder meetings
Security in events- government and legal representations
Questionnaire for event learning- ERPs and other live events taking place
Track and Trace updates

Useful links

We Make Events
Next activation - #Rave2Recovery with a 60-hour DJ marathon on Twitch raising funds for #WeMakeEvents! Big-name DJs are preparing for a 24-hour global fundraiser on Saturday 12 June featuring DJ Brandon Block, Kiss FM and Mi Soul Radio Pioneer Gordon Mac and DJ, broadcaster and Live Aid host Andy Kershaw!

#WeMakeEvents has written to all our supportive MPs outlining the uncertainty regarding the timelines for events to re-open. Without knowing what restrictions will be in place in terms of capacity or testing regimes, it is impossible for many events to prepare for re-opening. Whilst we understand it is necessary to wait for data from the Event Research Programme test events, it is also important to press for sector specific support until we are able to fully re-open.

Useful links

In aid of Stagehand's #ILoveLive campaign, the UK metal community is raising money for UK stage crew affected by the pandemic.

Useful Links