UK theatres close due to coronavirus
Tuesday, 17 March 2020
photo-on-unsplashPhoto by Kilyan Sockalingum on Unsplash
UK - The Society of London Theatre and UK Theatre announced the closure of all its venues with immediate effect, following the government’s press conference yesterday afternoon.
An official statement said: “We regret to announce that as of this evening all SOLT and UK Theatre member venues will close this evening (including tonight’s performances) in light of the most recent official government advice. They will remain closed until further notice and will re-open as soon as possible, following government recommendations.”
In the press conference, the prime minister has said he is giving “very strong advice that public venues such as theatres should no longer be visited”.
He stopped short of issuing an outright ban on mass gatherings and said: “As for enforcement, we have the powers if necessary but I don’t believe that it will be necessary to use those powers.”
The joint statement reads: “The safety of our audience and workforce is paramount to us as we navigate this challenging time. We, therefore, regret to announce that as of this evening all SOLT and UK Theatre member venues will close this evening (including tonight’s performances) in light of the most recent official government advice. They will remain closed until further notice and will re-open as soon as possible, following government recommendations.”
“The magic of theatre lies in its live performances and it is not something that can be experienced in the same way remotely. Its ability to lift people and entertain people even in times of difficulty is unparalleled and so we are extremely grateful to all of our audiences, who have continued to support us for as long as they can. We can’t wait to welcome our audiences back into the UK’s theatres as soon as possible.
“We would like to commend the dedicated hard work from everyone in theatres across London and the UK over the last few weeks to continue to entertain and delight people for as long as they safely could. There are over 290,000 individuals working in the theatre industry across the UK, and the closure of theatres and public venues will have a devastating impact.
We will remain in contact over the coming weeks and keep everyone up-to-date as the situation changes. During this period, we as an industry want to play our part in supporting everyone in our communities and will also continue to look for ways to entertain and uplift people across the country, so please follow our social channels and stay in touch.”
(Jim Evans)

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