A discount scheme should be introduced to help London’s theatres, according to a leading think tank.
While a number of industries are opening up after the dreaded lockdown, London’s theatres are still struggling to get back on their feet. Though several are back up and running, the vast majority of West End productions are nowhere to be seen. With coronavirus still very much on the loose, social distancing has become Plan A for businesses reopening all over the country – however, it’s not financially viable for most theatres to open with limited capacity, hence the delay. On that point, however, the Centre for London believe they have a solution…
Centre for London – the capital’s dedicated think tank – have put together a thorough recovery plan to help theatres get back on track. It is a nine point proposal, with suggestions that can be put into place in the near future. High on their priority list is the need “to create a new space for performances that respect physical-distancing rules.” And designating outdoor areas for shows is their very simple solution.
Furthermore, introducing “culture vouchers similar to the Eat Out To Help Out scheme, will encourage audiences back to venues.” These discount vouchers could be spent on the shows themselves or at affiliate businesses, boosting ticket sales, revenue, and buzz around the West End all at the same time. That’s a win-win situation if you ask me.
The Eat Out To Help Out agenda saw some restaurants returning to pre-pandemic capacity, and provided a much-needed boost for the hospitality industry. By the looks of things, London’s theatres need the same level of support in order to make a full recovery.
Several theatres have warned that the loss of revenue has put them on the brink of collapse, and this wonderful plan could prevent treasured venues from folding. At the very least, this plan would allow theatres to reopen safely and would provide employment for the thousands of individuals who work in the industry. Nothing concrete has come from these suggestions just yet, but we’ll be waiting with bated breath to find out more.