The Outbreak Management Team (OMT) advises the government to reopen cultural sector of the Netherlands. In that case, the events and festivals should also be possible again…
Event industry wants clarity: “Will we be bankrupt in 2 months or sooner?”
This week, the government relaxed a number of measures against the coronavirus, but there wasn’t that much good news for our beloved events. It seems that this will take a while, but various sectors from the events world want clarity: “80% of the tent industry is bankrupt after a year.”
A day after the press conference, when Minister de Jonge told good news for a lot of branches, but Martijn van den Broek – who works at tent rental company Van Ham Tenten & Podia – couldn’t believe his ears. “First, events might not take place until after September 1”, he told NPO Radio 1. “And then today – with the thought as if no one sees it – the news goes that major events shouldn’t take place until there is a vaccine has been brought out with just a letter to the parlement. While thousands of people in the industry are about to fall over. Everyone wonders: how long do we have left? Do I have to file for bankruptcy in 1 or 2 months?”
Although there are certain (small) provisions from the government, it is almost impossible for festival workers to stand still for a year. “We understand that large events with thousands of people are not possible”, Van den Broek continues. “But really everything is approached the exact same way. It is not clear to anyone what ‘major events’ are. A village fete, with only few hundred locals, can not take place now, because they also need a permit, and are therefore not allowed now. Now it is said that there is a vaccine first, no events are allowed. But just as perspective is offered for the catering industry, we also need it sparsely. “ This applies not only to tent rental companies, but also to suppliers, sound engineers and many others.
The events industry feels abandoned
Van den Broek would like to have some light at the end of the tunnel. “First it was September 1. And you also need future prospects, for example at the bank. The uncertainty means that you cannot act. Because why, for example, a wedding for 100 people can now be held in a building, but not outside in a tent?”
Van den Broek expects that he and his colleagues, from 275 Dutch rental companies and about 5,500 employees, will miss out on 385 million euros this year.
Cover photo taken from Facebook page Harmony of Hardcore