DCMS summary of roadmap details for performing arts

Following yesterday's announcement of the Prime Minister's Covid-19 roadmap to re-opening, DCMS has circulated this summary of the details specific to the performing arts. 

Equity continues to be involved in discussions with DCMS on the roadmap as the situation develops. As it is clear that the timeline to a full re-opening of our industry is some months off, it remains imperative that the government provides financial support to our members.


Step 2: no earlier than 12 April

• Drive-in performances events and drive in Cinemas - accompanied by mitigations including workforce testing and continued social distancing guidance.

• People should continue to work from home where they can, minimise domestic travel where they can.

• All children will be able to attend any indoor children's activity, including sport, regardless of circumstance.

• Event pilots begin (see below).

Step 3: no earlier than 17 May

• Indoor hospitality and entertainment, and remaining outdoor entertainment, such as outdoor theatres and cinemas.

• There will be no requirement for a substantial meal to be served alongside alcoholic drinks, and no curfew. The requirement to order, eat and drink while seated (‘table service’) will remain;

• COVID-Secure guidance will remain in place and premises must not cater for groups larger than the legal limits

• Controlled socially distanced indoor events of up to 1,000 people or 50% of a venue’s capacity, whichever is lower, will be permitted, as will socially distanced outdoor events with a capacity of either 50% or 4,000 people, whichever is lower.

• Special provision for large, outdoor, seated venues where crowds can be safely distributed, allowing up to 10,000 people or 25% of total seated capacity, whichever is lower.

• Pilots will run as part of the Events Research Programme to examine how such events can take place without the need for social distancing using other mitigations such as testing.

• Government will lift most legal restrictions on meeting others outdoors, but gatherings of more than 30 people outdoors will remain illegal.

• Indoors, people will be able to meet socially in a group of 6, or with 1 other household, though it may be possible to go further than this at Step 3 depending on the data. Non-professional activity will be able to resume from this time.

• Ahead of Step 4, the Government will conduct a review of social distancing and other long-term measures that have been put in place to limit transmission. The results of the review will help inform the timing and circumstances under which we may be able to lift social distancing guidance and other measures. Current social distancing measures will remain in place until the outcome of that review are known.

• The Government will continue to advise the public to work from home where they can.

Step 4: no earlier than 21 June

• Remove all legal limits on social contact, publishing accompanying guidance on how best to reduce the risk of transmission and protect ourselves and loved ones;

• Reopen the remaining closed settings, including nightclubs and enable large events, including theatre performances, above the Step 3 capacity restrictions, subject to the outcome of the scientific Events Research Programme and potentially using testing to reduce the risk of infection, subject to further evaluation.

Large events

• DCMS and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy have been working with representatives from industry and civil society to explore when and how events with larger crowd sizes, less social distancing or in settings where transmission is more likely (i.e. indoors), will be able to return safely. This includes sports events, music festivals and large weddings and conferences.

• Over the spring the Government will run a scientific Events Research Programme. This will include a series of pilots using enhanced testing approaches and other measures to run events with larger crowd sizes and reduced social distancing to evaluate the outcomes. The pilots will start in April.

• The Government will bring the findings from across different sectors and different settings to determine a consistent approach to lifting restrictions on these events. Depending on the outcome of this work, the Government hopes to be able to lift restrictions on these events and sectors as part of Step 4.