Updated story: Committee urges Chancellor to extend safety net to save summer festivals
The Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee (DCMS) has written to the Chancellor asking him to extend Government-backed insurance schemes to festivals and live music events or face them disappearing from our fields and cities for good.
Our Chair, @julianknight15, along with over 100 cultural sector names, has written to the Chancellor, @RishiSunak, calling on @hmtreasury to back insurance that will kickstart planning for festivals and live performances this summer. #FutureOfFestivalsInquiry
— Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee (@CommonsDCMS) January 7, 2021
The letter comes after the DCMS launched the #FutureOfFestivalsInquiry where MPs examined what support is needed for UK music festivals to return in 2021, as they consider the economic and cultural impact of festivals across the country. Representatives from Boomtown Fair, Parklife, UK Music, AIF UK and AFO Festivals were consulted about what support music festivals need to return when it is safe to do so.
Tomorrow at 10am we’re kicking off our #FutureOfFestivalsInquiry. We’ll be hearing from reps from @BoomtownFair, @Parklifefest, @UK_Music, @AIF_UK and @AFO_Festivals about what support music festivals need to return when it is safe to do so. pic.twitter.com/I1N0AMiexn
— Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee (@CommonsDCMS) January 4, 2021
At a crucial point in festival planning schedules, MPs warn that organisers and investors are unable to risk repeating losses sustained in 2020 unless events can be insured against cancellation.
With the commercial insurance market not expected to offer Covid-related insurance until 2022, a Government-backed scheme is required for festivals to start planning their events and signing contracts with artists and suppliers.
The appeal urges the Government to extend to other creative industries the underwriting schemes already offered to the film and television industries.