Events want 1.5 meters away and 100 percent open: ‘These plans are deep insult'

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Events want 1.5 meters away and 100 percent open: ‘These plans are deep insult’

VideoThe end of the total evening lockdown is in sight and that causes happy reactions in various branches. Nevertheless, there is also a murmur and annoyance about the leaked plans here and there. ,,A nice and hopeful intermediate step, but this is not yet a solution”, it sounds, for example, in the concert industry.

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Sebastian Quekel

24 Jan. 2022
Latest update:

Global Tech News Daily

The cabinet probably wants to open the catering industry, culture and some of the events until 10 p.m. from Wednesday, subject to conditions. For events, there is a mandatory seat with a maximum capacity of 1250 visitors. Outside, a location may be filled with a maximum of one third of the capacity.

No sod on dike

This does not bode well for concerts, because a large part of the turnover is realized between 10 p.m. and 4 a.m., according to Berend Schans, director of the trade association Vereniging Nederlandse Poppodia and Festivals. “Under normal circumstances, we need to have an average of 90 to 95 percent room occupancy if we want to cover the costs, without those 1.5 meters.”

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Some concerts with fixed seats will be possible again from Wednesday. A ‘nice development’, Schans tells this site. ,,This is a nice and hopeful intermediate step, but this does not help. Apparently, the same road to reopening should be taken as to closure, but the other way around. As far as we are concerned, this can be done faster and in larger steps.” He therefore advocates reopening the cultural and creative sector as soon as possible ‘without restrictive measures’.

A farce

The event industry endorses the feeling that lives at pop venues. “It is logical that things will move step by step, but for the time being I see that there will be little or no real opportunities for the event world,” Willem Westermann, chairman of the Association of Event Makers, told this site. ,,I am happy for those who can do something, but I see that the opportunities and possibilities with us are still small or absent.”

The corporate event sector is even more critical and calls the reopening with restrictive measures ‘a farce’. Under those restrictive rules, it is impossible to organize trade fairs and other events in a cost-effective manner, let alone profitably. That is what organizers of trade fairs and conferences say, such as the trade association EventPlatform and Ahoy in Rotterdam.

Riemer Rijpkema, director of EventPlatform, points out that the restrictions are at the expense of companies’ enthusiasm to organize an event. The government should also not underestimate the preparation time. Most major exchanges take months to set up. Due to the lack of perspective, events are canceled according to Rijpkema. “Due to all the uncertainty, companies are going to make different choices. Measures discourage people. Not everyone is waiting for remote networking and wearing face masks,” he says.

Deep insult

According to festival organizer ID&T Groep, the event sector will not open at all after Wednesday, but will remain closed. “After repeated calls to the cabinet to come up with a full and realistic long-term plan, we are deeply disappointed in the leaked measures,” CEO Ritty van Straalen said. “Although these ‘relaxations’ make it seem like the event sector can open again, this is not the case. Only a third capacity is not a reopening and any longer shut feels like a deep insult to our entire industry.”

According to Van Straalen, the situation surrounding the events industry is ‘unsustainable and, combined with the lack of prospects, it is extremely demotivating for our entire sector’. We continue to call on the cabinet to come up with a fully-fledged and realistic plan for the events sector, without 1.5 meters and without capacity restrictions, to save the once flourishing events industry and so that we can get out of this crisis together. general manager of the organization behind events such as Mysteryland, Defqon.1 and Awakenings.

Horeca rejoices

In contrast to the event makers, catering entrepreneurs are in a jubilant mood. “We have been lobbying hard for this in recent days. It threatened to go in the wrong direction for a while,” KHN chairman Robèr Willemsen told this site.

KHN has indicated that it has worked very hard recently for a safe reopening of the catering industry and has committed to a reopening with its own roadmap with an access stop at 10 p.m., which means that guests can enter a catering business until 10 p.m.

The leaked plans therefore coincide with KHN’s wish and commitment, so that catering entrepreneurs can also receive their guests in the evening and thus make part of the evening turnover. “KHN is very happy with that.” The branch organization says it is happy with ‘the diligence with which the new cabinet appears to be dealing with the corona crisis’.

Clubs and discotheques

KHN hopes that the cabinet will ‘maintain this diligence’ when it comes to quickly abolishing the restrictions that are still permanent, such as the corona ticket, mouth cap, placing and the reservation system. Chairman Robèr Willemsen calls on the cabinet to closely follow developments in other countries such as the United Kingdom and the insights of the WHO. “Don’t stick to static weighing moments every two weeks, but relax ad hoc, when possible,” he says.

Willemsen realizes that the upcoming relaxations will not solve anything for clubs and discotheques. “There is no prospect at all for those entrepreneurs. We are confident that the new cabinet will soon offer prospects for this group.” In his comment, Willemsen is remarkably positive about the start of Rutte-IV. “They seem to be less in that tunnel of concern. We look more closely at society as a whole.”

The Dutch Police Association also calls the opening of the catering industry ‘good news’. “If it were indeed the case, then it is a good step from a safety perspective,” said chairman Jan Struijs. ,,People are looking for an outlet and that is now manifesting itself in illegal parties. We are getting more and more reports of fights getting out of hand.” According to him, a relaxation of the corona measures will ‘really help’.

Royal Promotions, publicity agency for musicals like He believes in me and aladdin, says that the possible relaxation for the cultural sector, among others, is ‘fantastic’. “We have been waiting for this for so long,” owner Marco de Koning told ANP. The cultural sector may soon be allowed to receive public again until 10 p.m.

“It’s so nice to probably be able to receive an audience again.” The sector has been open at times, but also regularly had to keep its doors closed. “The fact that we may now be allowed to go again is fantastic”, says De Koning. “Really crazy.” It means that, among other things, the musicals Tina, He Believes In Me and aladdin can start again with the public. A limit of 1250 visitors is expected to apply. “That’s a very nice number.”

Movie theaters

The industry is reacting positively to the likely reopening of the cinemas. “We are pleased that the government has listened to the signal from the sector. Together with mayors, it must be examined how the run-out times of films can be made practically feasible,” said NVBF director Gulian Nolthenius.

Cinema chain Pathé has said it has been ‘greatly looking forward’ to the reopening since December. The organization now has to wait for the permitted opening hours and capacity. “As soon as it is announced, our team will definitely program all films, let our visitors know as soon as possible which films are showing when and the presales will start,” said a spokesperson.

task force

Finally, the Cultural Sector Taskforce argues for closing times later than the time of 10 p.m. This is to avoid peaks in transport and visitor flows, according to chairman Jan Zoet. According to Zoet, the audience counts on known showtimes and the duration of a performance is fixed. “Musicals and oratorios, for example, do not end before 10 p.m. and cannot be shortened,” says Zoet. Moreover, according to him, a later closing time leads to a better spread of transport and visitor flows.

The task force, which represents more than 400 organizations and makers from the creative and cultural sector, also believes that 75 percent should be used. In the leaked relaxations, it seems that a maximum of 1250 people are allowed in a room.

Watch all our videos about the lockdown here:

Visitors during the Milkshake Festival at the Westergasterrein in Amsterdam © ANP

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Events want 1.5 meters away and 100 percent open: ‘These plans are deep insult’ | Coronavirus
Source link Events want 1.5 meters away and 100 percent open: ‘These plans are deep insult’ | Coronavirus

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