Insight: Issue 33 (24th February)
While the UK counts down to June 21st, event profs be like. . .
Today we’ve got: the long-awaited roadmap to recovery, and what it means for events (hint: not much); a minute-by-minute guide to virtual events; a webinar on the consequences of Brexit for the events industry; news of a test concert in Barcelona with 500 attendees and 0 infections; 23 stunning venues to impress your guests post-COVID; and the launch of PositiviTEA, a movement encouraging event profs to make time for themselves this Event Wellbeing Day.
So. . .where’s our roadmap?
After Monday’s long-awaited roadmap from the UK PM, and Tuesday’s more reserved approach outlined by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, it seems the events industry will be the last stop on the route. Who’s surprised?
The Production Services Association (PSA) is warning that event venues will not be viable under UK plans for events to restart with capacity restrictions in the spring. To recap, from approx. 17th May this is what’s allowed:
- Some large events (e.g. conferences, theatre performances, sports) with limited attendance.
- Controlled indoor events of up to 1,000 people, or 50% of a venue’s capacity.
- Outdoor events of up to 4,000 people, or 50% of a venue’s capacity.
- Large outdoor seated events (where crowds can be socially distanced) with up to 10,000 people, or 25% of total seated capacity.
Scotland’s route map is significantly more cautious, only travelling to the point of businesses reopening their doors by late April, with a tiered system being established after this.
The full lifting of restrictions on live events, in step 4 of the plan from 21st June, will depend on the results of pilot studies being carried out throughout April.
So, long story short, further government support for event profs will be needed for another 4 months until lockdown is completely over. You can read the PSA’s full statement here.
Your minute-by-minute guide to virtual events
We may not have a roadmap to live events, but we’ve got our virtual journeys sorted. Event Planner has shared their minute-by-minute guide to virtual events, ensuring your next online get-together runs smoothly with these 5 simple steps:
- Make an Excel spreadsheet for all the event sessions. It doesn’t have top be be sophisticated—just list all the event activities alongside the start and end times. Colour code for extra points!
- Designate backstage and onstage teams for each session. You’ll need people behind the scenes to manage the nuts and bolts of the streaming platform, as well as a moderator on stage to control the show.
- Make a to-do list for each session, before and after. Will you be running an intro video before each session? Will you display a ‘what’s next’ slide at the end? That sort of thing.
- Note the technical requirements for each session. Do you need simultaneous translations? Or maybe live polls? Will you have multiple speakers on screen at once? Etc.
- Don’t forget the phone numbers of your stakeholders. Virtual events can be just as unpredictable as live ones (connectivity issues being the biggest trouble-maker!). So make sure you have contact info for everyone involved to avoid any last-minute hiccups.
Sign up for Friday’s ESSA Brexit Webinar
If the pandemic wasn’t enough to worry about, the events industry has Brexit to contend with too. Unsurprisingly, the Event Supplier and Services Association (ESSA) is reporting strong interest in its virtual Brexit Webinar, taking place this Friday (26th) at 10am.
Pam Loch, solicitor and founder of Loch Associates, will use her experience in HR and employment law to examine the sector-specific consequences of Brexit on the events industry. Some of the issues on the agenda are: how Brexit affects employee status; how the points-based immigration system works; and what changes to expect when travelling for work and recruiting within the EU.
ESSA members and non-members can apply, but spaces are limited—so book your spot, STAT!
Concert with rapid on-site testing is a success
In more positive news, a Barcelona nightclub has hosted a concert for almost 500 people with no subsequent COVID infections, after requiring 15-minute antigen tests prior to entry. Hooray!
All participants—aged 18-59, with no serious illnesses—signed a consent form beforehand and were required to test negative immediately before entry to the club. No physical distancing was required, alcohol was served, and singing and dancing were allowed. Imagine that! It almost sounds like…fun?
23 stunning venues to impress your guests
Thanks to lockdown, we’re all craving adventure, awe-inspiring scenery and…well…anything beyond the four walls of our homes. So Event Planner has shared some much-needed escapism in the form of 23 stunning venues to impress your guests when restrictions are finally lifted. Here’s a sneak peek…
(No, we’re not drooling, you are!)
EventWell launches PositiviTEA
And last for today, we all need more positivity (and puns) in our lives. That’s why EventWell—a charity campaigning for better mental health in the events industry—are launching PositiviTEA: a movement encouraging everyone in the events sector to make time for themselves on Event Wellbeing Day (which is coming up on Wednesday 3rd March).
From a virtual afternoon tea to an online games night, PositiviTEA events are a great way to fundraise for a good cause, whilst also supporting the wellbeing of fellow event profs. Caroline Cronin, Head of Fundraising, commented:
“It’s the perfect opportunity to remind ourselves of the positive affirmation’s that we should be taking, and the PositiviTEA movement has been created as a way to anchor in some fun activities that can be shared with others on the day. If we can raise some money in the process, either by donating or asking others to sponsor you, EventWell can support those in the Events Industry that do need our help.”
For inspiration and to register, head on over to eventwell.org/positivitea-by-eventwell.
Take care of yourselves, event profs! <3