Two-Metre Rule Must Be Relaxed For Musicians


Two-Metre Rule Must Be Relaxed For Musicians

The government is being urged to ease social distancing for musicians, so more of them can get back performing and recording.

Musicians’ Union leader Horace Trubridge told the BBC they could play “side by side” to lessen the risk of spreading coronavirus.

The 2m rule was “overkill” at a “bleak” time for his members, he added.

The government said it welcomed “creative and innovative” ideas to help the UK’s “brilliant” musicians.

Coronavirus means theatres, pubs, clubs and other indoor music venues will be closed for the foreseeable future, while promoters have cancelled all the UK’s main festivals.

The Labour-affiliated Musicians’ Union is in talks with the Department for Culture, Media and Sport over “enhanced busking” – allowing spectators in outdoor spaces to make contactless payments for individual and group performances.

“They seem to be keen on that,” Mr Trubridge said, adding that councils could “relax their bylaws” to help “get live music back into the public’s consciousness”.

He argued it was difficult to see a way of easing social distancing for audiences to make theatres and venues viable during the pandemic, but that this was not the case for performers.

“There’s no finesse about the 2m rule at the moment,” Mr Trubridge said. “If you’re in a line rather than looking at each other, then it seems to be overkill.”

Did we take too long to lock down?

You could argue these criticisms are being levelled with a degree of hindsight. But even if you give the UK the benefit of the doubt for the lack of preparedness, when the gravity of the situation became clear were we too slow to act?

By early March, government modellers had realised the virus was more widespread than had previously been assumed and with distressing scenes from Italy beginning to emerge, the government announced its next steps.

Some measures started to be put in place, including asking people to isolate at home if they developed symptoms. But full lockdown was not announced until 23 March.

During that time people were travelling around the country, commuters flooded in and out of London on busy trains, tubes and buses and major sporting events continued, including the Cheltenham Festival.

Fairies And Mice In Creative Lockdown Trails

Prof Sir David King, a former government scientific adviser, has argued it is clear we reacted “too late”, warning every day of delay “cost lives”.

Modelling carried out for Channel Four Dispatches programme has suggested a lockdown on 12 March could have saved 13,000 lives, while one on 16 March might have saved 8,000.

Two-Metre Rule Must Be Relaxed For Musicians


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