Reopening Date for Theatres

Jul 30 2020 | By More

September Date planned for Scottish Theatres

Scottish theatres will be allowed to reopen with physical distancing in place on Monday 14 September 2020, if plans announced by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon go ahead.

The date is one of a series of indicative dates for easing lockdown the FM announced in Holyrood today, Thursday 30 July.

She also said that from Monday 24 August, comedy and live music events are expected to be allowed to take place outside – with physical distancing, enhanced hygiene and reduced numbers.

FM Nicola Sturgeon announces an indicative date of 14 Sept 2020 for reopening of theatres in Scotland. Screen-grab: Thom Dibdin

Announcing the proposed 14 September date Sturgeon said: “I know that the challenges these decisions pose for the cultural sector are significant and that this further delay for arts venues will be disappointing.

“For that reason we are increasing the value of of our performing arts venue relief fund which opens for applications today, from £10 million to £12.5 million to provide further support for the Culture sector.”

The Performing Arts Venues Relief Fund is targeted at venues which cannot yet reopen to their audiences due to the ongoing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. It will be administered by Creative Scotland.

It aims to remove the threat of insolvency, to allow for staff to return to work and to increase commissioning and employment opportunities for freelance artists and creative practitioners.

£5 million for non-RFOs

There is £7.5 million is available for Creative Scotland’s regular funded venues with the remaining £5 million available to venues not currently in receipt of regular funding.

The fund is the first stand-alone element of the £97 million for arts organisations announced earlier in July.

According to CS website the Scottish Government intends the fund to:

  • Remove the threat of insolvency prior to the end of March 2021 to enable the development and delivery of activity as soon as practicable;
  • Allow for specialist / core staff to return from furlough or avoid redundancy to work on future sustainable activity plans; and
  • Increase commissioning and employment opportunities for freelance artists and creative practitioners (between now and end of March 2021) to support continued public engagement while closed.

Creative Scotland’s CEO Iain Munro said: “Beyond this fund, we are also working closely with the Scottish Government on further measures to provide emergency support for the culture sector and further details will be announced as soon as possible.”

Applications opened today for the fund and have to be made venues have to provide Creative Scotland with an expression of interest to determine eligibility by Wednesday 5 August. Decisions will be made by September 24.

Details are available on the Creative Scotland website here:


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