With the Strategic Framework update due next week, Scotland EPIC met with policymakers at Scottish Government yesterday to highlight the need for clarity around how events will return this summer within the updated strategic framework route map.
Specific to events returning this Summer, we discussed the need for greater clarity on which type of events can open and in what environment, along with when these can happen (even if subject to change), the importance of clarity in what level of physically distancing will be required at events throughout the recovery roadmap and the need to know what capacities would be permitted at each stage throughout the roadmap.
We stressed that because of the long planning times and upfront investment required for events, it is imperative that there is a plan put in place.
We also called for clarity on the 'movement of people' plan, as this will affect all events and festivals in terms of planning. We have also requested they clarify if guidelines around restricted movements will be provided and controlled by local authorities or health boards.
This conversation highlighted that if decision making fell to Local Authorities, there is a requirement for immediate and clear communication between ScotGov and Local Authorities to provide them with the information they require to decide fairly and safely if an event should be permitted to take place.
We stressed that we do understand the challenges faced by the Scottish Government whilst they lead us through this pandemic, and we accepted that nothing can be set in stone.
Finally, we concluded on our side by saying that in order to have any chance of the event industry recovery we are hoping for this summer, forward planning and clear guidelines and communication are essential.