On Wednesday I wrote again to the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport raising the perilous financial state of our cultural industries – theatres, other live performance venues and the talent working across them again pressing for urgent, sector specific support before it’s too late.
The sector will be one of the last to re-open because of the difficulty, in many cases impossibility, of operating with social distancing. Easing of restrictions does not always mean reopening – most simply cannot afford to reopen with capacity restrictions.
Redundancy consultation notices are now being issued, theatres around the country are going under – UK Theatre gave evidence to the DCMS Select Committee confirming that 70% could close by the end of this year.
Across live music, comedy & other live performance, significant numbers of skilled people who are the backbone of our cultural industries have been excluded from Treasury support schemes and as furlough is wound down, lack of income means large scale redundancies.
So a huge loss of talent and specialist skills – the engine room of our world-renowned cultural industries – that will severely impede post COVID recovery and renewal. The UK Government needs to act now.
Time is running out.
My letter in full: