Earlier today, I met virtually with Tom and Amber of Fusion Sound and Light to hear their concerns on the impact Coronavirus restrictions have had on their business, the wider live events supply chain, and the support they would like to see in Wednesday’s Budget.
As someone who had to postpone their own wedding last year, I know the impact cancelling such a large event can have on the wider supply chain. Weddings, festivals, and other live events take months, even years, to plan and so I was grateful to hear from Fusion Sound and Light on the affect restrictions have had on businesses like theirs.
We also discussed the importance of the recently announced roadmap and what this means for allowing businesses and individuals to begin to plan again, however it is necessary that support is in place until this time. This includes an extension of the furlough scheme, VAT cuts and access to kickstart grants. As I have raised with the Treasury before, many businesses within the weddings and events sector have been unable to access the support other sectors have been able to benefit from. This means it is necessary to ensure we see further support included in the Budget on Wednesday to prop these businesses up until restrictions are no longer needed.
A further point Tom and Amber were keen to raise about the roadmap is the opening of indoor events for up to 1000 people from 17 May while weddings are still restricted to 30 people for a further month. Weddings are easily able to comply with track and trace measures and so this is something I will continue to press Minister about in the coming weeks.
I am hopeful for some positive news in the Budget on Wednesday, but will ensure that I raise Tom and Amber’s concerns with the Chancellor beforehand.