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Music industry workers march in Manchester calling for government support

The #WeMakeEvents march coincides with a country-wide ‘Red Alert’ day where venues will light up in unison

Music industry workers marched in Manchester today (11th August), calling on the government to provide for employees in the touring and festival events sectors.

Backed by Manchester icons The Stone Roses and New Order, as well as the Night Time Economy Adviser for Greater Manchester Sacha Lord, hundreds of mask-clad, socially-distanced employees from the touring and festival sectors took to Manchester's Oxford Street earlier today. PLASA (Professional Lighting and Sound Association), who were behind the day of action dubbed #WeMakeEvents, made a number of demands from the UK government, including grants for businesses in the events supply chain, not just the venues, as well as extending the furlough scheme until the industry is able to work.

The touring and festival events sector is currently in crisis, with over 100,000 jobs at risk due to the coronavirus pandemic, and many more expected. The #WeMakeEvents march coincides with a country-wide ‘Red Alert’ day where venues across the UK will light up in unison, including London's Tate Modern, London Eye, Wembley Arena, and The National Theatre.

Last month, following various campaigns by the likes of Music Venues Trust (MVT) and #LetTheMusicPlay, the UK government have announced the first details of a £1.57billion support package for arts and culture institutions which remain closed amid the coronavirus pandemic. The package includes £270m in loans and £880million in grants for music venues, theatres, museums, heritage sites and galleries. 

You can see footage from the march today, and an interview with Sacha Lord, below.