Yesterday the “roadmap out of lockdown” was announced, with provisional dates of opening up the UK economy following a year of lockdown; and critically how this applies to weddings and events in England.
Here’s a quick summary, and how it applies to the entertainment I provide at events.
Step 1: Monday 8th March 2021
Weddings can take place with up to 6 attendees
Step 2: Monday 12th April 2021
Wedding attendees increased to 15. (I have performed at weddings of this size and have a “Small Wedding Package“)
Social contact limited to 6 people outside , so not really much of a party.
Step 3: Monday 17th May 2021
Wedding increased further to 30 attendees. (I have performed at weddings of this size and have a “Small Wedding Package“)
Social contact is now 30 people outdoors. Many family parties and events I attend over the summer months are held outside, so actually this shouldn’t have too much affect on these type of events.
Business events (corporate hospitality, exhibitions and parties) are not limited by number, though likely the venue will impose capacity restrictions and event must be conducted in a “safe” manner. From my point of view this is fine, especially if being booked to perform cabaret; though my close-up magic and mind-reading can be performed safely without detriment to the engagement and entertainment value.
Step 4: Monday 21st June 2021
Of course, the dates announced are provisional and the “earliest” projections – which means there’s a good chance they’ll be put back. Though it’s also possible the government have been a little overly pessimistic, and have set targets they know they are likely to achieve and therefore will be able to take the glory at lifting restrictions ahead of target. Without getting distracted by the politics and science behind these projected dates, the main thing is from a few weeks times events are going to be slowly opening back up.
How It Affects Existing Bookings
Over the last year I’ve moved people’s dates as their weddings and events have had to be postponed, and for many clients this has happened numerous times. I’m proud to say that I’ve not had to cancel any postponements because of my diary management. I have however had to turn away people who wished to booked me for future events as that date had been taken by an event that should have previously occurred.
From this point on, if the event is legally able to go ahead (although the number of attendees may be restricted) I am going to have to be firmer regarding postponements. Essentially I’m not going to be able to transfer it to another date without charging an additional booking fee for the revised date (which will be the same as the booking fee paid at the time of original booking). This is assuming I am available for the date. If I am not available for the revised date then the original booking fee is non refundable and the original terms of the contract remain valid.
Of course, should postponement be required because of legal restrictions then naturally I will try my best to accommodate the new date as I have been since the first lockdown in March 2020.
If the event is cancelled outright (and not postponed) then the standard cancellation terms and conditions (as per the signed contract and published terms) will hold.
It is the responsibility of the booker to arrange adequate wedding/event insurance when organising their event; and as a small business owner who has had their life decimated by the restrictions I can no longer take the financial burden should you decided to move the date of your event.