“Let Us Dance” Call for Nightclubs in England on New Year’s Eve

The UK’s night-time industry is calling on Prime Minister Boris Johnson to let clubs and venues operate on New Year’s Eve amid rumours of an imminent lockdown in England.

 

Although the Prime Minister has not yet announced any plans for one, reports have been circulating over the last week about the possibility of a post-Christmas “circuit-breaker” lockdown in an attempt to stymie rising cases of the Omicron variant of COVID-19.

 

Michael Kill, the Chief Executive of the Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) has written an open letter to Johnson, urging him not to shutter the industry on the typically busy night.

It warned the government response to the pandemic in recent weeks had caused “enormous damage” to the sector from which “tens of thousands” of businesses would likely not recover.

Nightclubs have been ordered to close on Boxing Day in Northern Ireland and on 27 December in Wales and Scotland, but the government in England has held off on announcing new restrictions.

Since 15 December people in England have had to show vaccine certification or proof of a negative lateral flow test through the NHS app to enter a nightclub.

The NTIA’s letter said: “Connecting through music, dance and socialising in our communities is an essential part of physical, social and mental wellbeing and during this extremely difficult time especially needed to give people hope. We must open! We do not want to rely on public funding, but you are giving us no choice.

“We have worked so hard and invested heavily to keep our customers and staff safe, against all adversity, and continue to present safe well-regulated spaces for people to come together safely and enjoy a night out.”

The trade body urged the prime minister to act with “clarity and decisiveness, as soon as the data allows”.

“Every hour of uncertainty condemns thousands of businesses to failure with all the human, social and economic consequences that entails,” the NTIA said.

Mr Kill concluded the letter by writing: “Let’s not end this year as we did last. End the uncertainty and Let Us Dance on New Year’s Eve