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Route Back to Uk Exhibitions

Route Back to Uk Exhibitions in 2021 – Government Test Events

As the UK makes its way out of lockdown, step three of the government’s roadmap includes plans for Spring ‘test events’. These events are set to be piloted across England at sporting and performance venues, before the relaxing of Covid-19 restrictions in June. The outcome of these tests will be vital to the future of the events and exhibition design industry, where most events have taken place virtually since the pandemic began. But what will the results signify in the move back to face-to-face exhibitions?

Venue Testing

The culture secretary, Olivia Dowden said the pilot events this spring ‘’will be crucial in finding ways to get fans and audiences back in safely without social distancing.’’ With the pandemic hard to predict these steps are important to put into practice regardless of the vaccine drive.

The venues participating in the programme will be tested and monitored in the following areas, with capacities ranging from 1,000 to 4,000 people.

  • Logistics of event ticketing
  • Venue admittance (testing on entry and exit)
  • One-way systems
  • Ventilation in venues
  • Response to potential outbreaks

Scientists will assess the data collected, using it to create best practices for future events and enabling crowds to return to small and large venues. The information will be shared so that sites can prepare to replicate the findings and accommodate bigger audiences safely. Of course, this is dependent on the accuracy of the data and the effect on coronavirus infection rates.

Participant Testing

The events will take place across the UK with some venues trialling Covid-19 passports. All participants will need to show they have been vaccinated, take a combination of negative lateral flow tests (carried out less than 24 hours before attendance) or a PCR test to show natural immunity.

Taking part will also involve giving consent when booking tickets, receiving text messages about coronavirus safety, minimising contact before the event and getting tested as close to the day as possible. Attendees won’t be able to attend if they develop symptoms.

List of events and potential capacities. The ACC Business Event is of particular interest to the exhibition industry:

  • 18-April: Wembley Stadium, FA Cup semi-final – capacity 4,000
  • 17-April – 3-May: Crucible Theatre, World Snooker – capacity 1,000
  • 23-25 April: Luna Cinema – capacity 1,000
  • 24-25 April: Hatfield House, fun runs – participants 3,000
  • 25-April: Wembley Stadium, Carabao Cup Final – capacity 4,000
  • 28-April: ACC Business Event – attendees 1,000
  • 30-April – 1-May: Circus Nightclub – capacity 3,000

Exhibition’s Recovery

The UFI (The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry) recently published a report laying out benchmarks to quantify the industry’s future progress:

  • 1. Proof that events can be run safely
  • 2. Getting the green light from authorities
  • 3. Restoring the confidence and trust of attendees
  • 4. Rebuilding confidence in a good ROI for exhibitors

While digital events have made an impact on the industry, the value of face-to-face events can’t be denied, particularly as some trade shows are difficult to convey in virtual format. Guidance from science and medical experts is essential to ensure that the industry gets back on its feet, with some possible recovery in 2021 and hopefully gaining momentum in 2022.

Here at 01EX, we can’t wait to be back interacting in person at exhibition halls and creating bespoke exhibition stands for our clients at live events. Our exhibition stand builders and contractors will be out in force as soon as it’s safe to do so. Until then, click here to get in contact if you’d like to talk to us further about the exciting future of trade shows and exhibitions.


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