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A ‘Seat Out To Help Out’ Scheme For Theatres Is Reportedly In The Works

By Laura Rogan September 7, 2020

The scheme would follow in the footsteps of ‘Eat Out To Help Out’.

After half a year of closures for Manchester theatres, in particular, it’s been announced that the Prime Minister and Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden are reportedly planning a new scheme which would encourage the public to head back to theatres and hopefully prevent mass closures across the entertainment industry. The scheme could be highly advantageous for venues across the country – with theatres currently only permitted to operate at a 25% capacity, almost 50% less than required to stay afloat.

Helping them get back on their feet after an incredibly turbulent time, the new scheme would attract more bums on seats, offering a similar discount as Rishi Sunak’s incredibly successful ‘Eat Out To Help Out’ scheme, which saw many restaurants fully booked up every Monday-Wednesday throughout August.

Photo: Palace Theatre

The new scheme would apply to both sports game and theatre shows, both of which have only recently been permitted to re-start after the Coronavirus lockdown. On Friday, it was announced that indoor performances in Manchester were now able to go ahead after the region was placed on local lockdown measures as a result of increasing cases.

The proposed scheme would offer up attractive discounts for theatre-goers, with a government source telling The Times: “It could be tickets for a tenner on a Monday, with a link to local restaurants.”

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden wrote in a piece for The Mail on Sunday: “We need to start filling seats in much larger numbers – not just for the audiences, not just for the venues and livelihoods who depend on them, but for the entire urban economy, too.

“Theatre is a lynchpin of London’s West End and its absence is painfully reflected in its deserted streets. Innovation is key. It has the ability to rewrite the entire script, and I’m keen to take some of the best experimental ideas for getting people into our theatres safely and put them into practice.”

Read more: 25 Manchester Restaurants Continuing Their Own “Eat Out To Help Out” Schemes In September