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UK government minister: "It's hard to see how nightclubs will open"

Gillian Keegan ruled out the reopening of nightclubs on Sky News

  • Seb Wheeler
  • 30 September 2020
UK government minister: "It's hard to see how nightclubs will open"

A government minister has said that "it is hard to see how nightclubs will open" in the near future.

Speaking live on Sky News yesterday, Gillian Keegan gave no cause for optimism for the club community.

The Apprenticeships & Skills Minister and MP for Chichester said: "It is hard to see how nightclubs will open until we have some kind of long-term way to deal with coronavirus. That is for sure true."

Her appearance on Sky News came as part of a government drive to re-skill workers in industries that have been devastated by the coronavirus pandemic, including the nightlife sector.

“It’s easy to see that nightclubs – which I’m sure we all enjoy going to – it’s difficult to see how you can have a nightclub operating with coronavirus. In any sort of enjoyable way," Keegan said.

She added: "It’s difficult to see how you could go to a nightclub within the rule of six…how can you socially distance and have a good time in a nightclub?

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“I think it is difficult to see how you could keep the coronavirus under control, indoors in those kind of situations which is why they haven’t been opened yet.”

The UK night time industry is worth £66 billion a year which includes nightclubs and live music venues, however the government has barely acknowledged clubs in its plans for economic recovery.

Talking to Sky, Gillian Keegan seemed to suggest that workers in industries that aren't able to function during the pandemic simply find a new job.

“Today we are introducing a new focus on adults which is just being able to offer people the chance to reskill, upskill, take different routes in life because they may need to," she said.

“It is clear that some of those jobs may take a long time to come back because they don’t fit with the virus.”

In a speech on Tuesday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that the government would be "transforming the foundations of the skills system so that everyone has the chance to train and retrain."

[Via the Evening Standard]

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