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UK to ban mass gatherings this week amid COVID-19 pandemic

The decision goes against the initial announcements from the UK government over the past few weeks

The British government are preparing to ban mass gatherings and crowds in coming weeks, as the global outbreak of coronavirus, or COVID-19, continues to spread.

The news comes after prime minister, Boris Johnson, announced that mass gatherings and events would continue as usual during a press conference on the 12th March. In a statement to The Independent, published on thwe 14th March, a Whitehall source had confirmed the government were moving towards the change.

The Whitehall source said: "Ministers are working with the chief scientific adviser and chief medical officer on our plan to stop various types of public event, including mass gatherings, beginning next week.

We are concerned about the burden large events put on public services – including the health service and the police – from dealing with coronavirus. We have drafted emergency legislation to give the government the powers it needs to deal with coronavirus, including powers to stop mass gatherings and compensate organisations. We will publish this legislation next week.”

The changes would see the UK follow in the footsteps of parts of the U.S. and Europe, where crowds, gatherings, events, and venues have been closed due to the pandemic.

Late last week, an online petition was created to support those in the events industry during the pandemic.

You can keep up to date with how the pandemic of the new coronavirus, COVID-19, is affecting the global electronic music scene here.