The Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) describes itself as the lobbying organization on behalf of the UK’s nightlife sector, a $66 billion industry and employer of 8% of Britain’s workforce. From a policy perspective, the organization relies on productive dialogue with government officials to advocate for the sector’s best interest, but with prolonged COVID-19 restrictions still in place and limited transparency from the government, it seems talks have all but broken down between the parties.
On Wednesday, December 2nd, the government’s latest instantiation of restrictions are scheduled to go into effect. The regulations, the NTIA argues, will continue to disproportionately impact the hospitality industry, as pubs, bars, and restaurants will be subjected to nightly curfew enforcement beginning at 10PM. Depending on the tier associated with the business location, many venues will be limited in their ability to open and will have to serve food via takeout. At the same time, non-essential retailers are being given the green light to reopen regardless of tier.
“This announcement by the Government has led us to believe that they are intentionally aiming to collapse our sector,” said NTIA CEO Michael Kill in response. “Every town and city across the UK stands to lose valued and much loved venues. This will be another stab in the heart of our town and city centres.”
With the new measures in place, the UK’s live music scene will once again be left without a viable path forward. Earlier in the fall, the government’s actions prompted Carl Cox and Calvin Harris, among other dance music artists, to speak up. “They’re basically saying we don’t exist,” Cox asserted.