The #WeMakeEvents campaign, which is raising the alarm for the live events and entertainment sector, now has the collaborative support of 17 trade bodies and several more production companies and manufacturers. Together, they have progressed the campaign into the ‘Red Alert’ phase which will see planned activities across London and the UK on the evening of Tuesday 11 August.
The UK’s live events and entertainment sector is in critical condition. It was the first to shut down in March and will be the last to reopen; the immediate cancellation of the busy Summer season affected 600,000+ jobs in outdoor events alone. A survey last week reported that 10% of businesses are serving redundancy notices in July, with a further 15% in August. By the end of the year 70% of industry businesses will have made redundancies. Looking ahead, live events may not be able to return until March 2021 due to unviable social distancing rules and the long-term planning required for many arena tours, festivals, and stadium events.
Current government support packages for employees and the self-employed are slowly being tapered and will terminate completely in three months. This will leave up to one million industry professionals with no financial security and no work prospects for several more months at least. The complete lack of work in the sector combined with the withdrawal of government support will force industry professionals, including the 72% of freelancers, to seek work in other sectors.
The UK is regarded as a world-leader in delivering memorable cultural events, and along with the expert skills and technologies manufactured here, the UK is at risk of losing it all to European and US businesses that have been bailed out by their governments.
James Gordon, CEO of Audiotronix comments: “The WeMakeEvents campaign has moved into the Red Alert phase, and it’s imperative that everyone from the events industry raises their voice and gets involved. This is a campaign for the companies, the employees and the many freelancers working in all aspects of the events industry supply chain. We all need government support to survive the current restricted situation, to allow us to re-emerge the industry we were, intact and ready to entertain, when restrictions allow. Please help us all and get behind WeMakeEvents to make our voices heard by the government.”
The industry bodies now involved in #WeMakeEvents include: the Association of British Theatre Technicians (ABTT), the Association of Lighting Designers (ALD), the Association of Event Organisers (AEO), Associations Sound Designers, Community Leisure UK, Creu Cymru, the Federation of Scottish Theatre (FST), Freelancers Make Theatres Work, The Institute of Sound & Communications Engineers (ISCE), MUTA, Music Venues Trust (MVT), the National Outdoor Events Association (NOEA), Night Time Industries Association (NTIA), PLASA, Production Managers Forum (PMF), Production Services Association (PSA), Society of London Theatre (SOLT) & UK Theatre, Sustainability in Production Alliance (SiPA) and Theatre & Dance Northern Ireland.