With COVID-19 changing so rapidly many live event companies and staff have suffered from the lack of certainty in the industry. The government have released plans for a new government-backed live events reinsurance scheme to cover the costs of an event if they were to ban live events once again due to COVID-19. But who will this affect and is it enough for an industry that has lost so much? We investigate the scheme and what it means for the live events sector.
Some of the biggest calendar events have had to be postponed or cancelled due to uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Music festivals such as Glastonbury are a part of the £70 billion live event industry which supports more than 700,000 jobs, including small businesses and the self-employed.
Jamie Njoku-Goodwin, Chief Executive of UK Music, said: “For months, UK Music has been warning about the catastrophic impact of the market failure in insurance for live events. The inability to obtain insurance has already caused many cancellations this summer – these have been devastating for the entire music industry and there were fears that without action we would have seen major cancellations continuing well into next year too.
WHAT IS THE GOVERNMENT LIVE EVENTS REINSURANCE SCHEME?
The UK Government has partnered with Lloyd’s to deliver the Live Events Reinsurance Scheme as part of the Plan for Jobs. It will cover costs incurred in the event of cancellation due to an event being legally unable to take place due to COVID-19 restrictions. Effectively the government is acting as a reinsurer to allow insurance companies to offer their solutions. The Live Events Reinsurance Scheme is worth more than £750 million so the scheme is very much welcomed to get the sector back up and running.
Lloyd’s CEO John Neal said: Lloyd’s has stood by its customers throughout the pandemic, and we are pleased to strengthen those efforts by partnering with the UK government to deliver the Live Events Reinsurance Scheme. This unique and critical cover will enable live events to resume around the country with confidence as society begins to reopen and begin its recovery, and we are proud to be playing our part.
WHAT DOES THE LIVE EVENTS REINSURANCE SCHEME OFFER?
With insurance cover for events being highly expensive or unavailable, many large events simply could not go ahead. This scheme aims to give event companies the reassurance they need to plan for next year’s events. It is the only insurance scheme in the world to cover such an array of events and not place a cap on costs claimed per event. The government-backed insurance will be available from September 2021 – September 2022. The economy has been given a significant restart after the pandemic and the scheme has helped many workers to return to the sector with valuable reassurance on the safety and stability of their income. ‘’Our events industries are not just vital for the economy and jobs; they put Britain on the map and, thanks to this extra support, will get people back to the experiences that make life worth living’’. The Culture Secretary, Oliver Dowden.
The live events reinsurance scheme will not only give reassurance to the live events industry, it will also provide much needed income for the economy while also providing jobs to thousands of people. During the pandemic, the live industry sector has reported that on average businesses have incurred a £2,398,600 loss.
LIVE EVENT’S INDUSTRY REACTION
Whilst the majority of those in the industry are thrilled with the scheme many are questioning if it is enough. As the insurance only covers events in the event that government restrictions make it illegal to continue with the event. But for many, the social distancing restrictions we have been living with much of the pandemic mean that events are not able to make a sufficient profit when operating at a lower capacity. Chris Smith, the Womad festival director. “What can you say that’s not offensive?” he said when asked for his reaction. “Anything to support the industry going forward is a positive, but it has come too late for so many organisations like ours who have lost the summer and need not have done. It is just another blow really that more could have been done.”
However, whilst many are angry the scheme was not available earlier, the majority are thrilled that it has finally arrived. Lesley Robinson, CEO of British Marine, the organisers of Southampton International Boat Show said: The announcement of the Live Events Reinsurance Scheme could not have come at a more critical point for us and is the news that we, and the entire events industry have been desperately calling for, so we welcome this scheme.
HOW OUR LIVE EVENTS AND EXHIBITION AGENCY CAN HELP YOUR EVENT
Here at GottaBe! we are thrilled to welcome the Live Events Reinsurance Scheme so we can continue to support our customers with their live events through out live events service such as Re:Claim festival in Southampton. As a company, we have a large pool of brand ambassadors which we employ for live events and many other assignments.
One of the many things we can help you with when planning an event is an Event checklist and the event experts at our Live Events And Exhibition Agency are ready to share their helpful advice to ensure that your event runs smoothly and is a great success. If you want to find out more about the support that GottaBe! can offer to your live event, just give us a call on 023 8063 4283 or complete our contact form.