With an aim to urge the UK government to roll out a support-package for the badly battered event industry in the country, The EIA (Event Industry Alliance), consisting ESSA (Event Supplier and Services Association), the AEV (Association of Event Venues) and the AEO (Association of Organizers has, last night ,delivered an open-letter to the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson. The other recipient  was the Chancellor of Exchequer, Rishi Sunak. The debate surrounding the lack of governmental support got even more pronounced with the last week’s announcement against holding the large or public gatherings.

The members of all these 3 associations, which translate into a total of 334 event companies, are the signatories. The letter proposes a ‘Event Industry Hibernation Scheme’, calling for the government to act with urgency and start their support so that the businesses and employees can survive this pandemic-fueled downturn. And ensuring a relatively easier comeback for the industry as and when the situation returns to normalcy.

The letter in full with signatories:

Dear Prime Minister, Dear Chancellor,

Proposal for Events Industry Hibernation Support Package

As representatives of the UK events industry we are writing to raise our serious concerns over the existential threat faced by our sector given the Government’s decision to close events for at least another six months and the inability of many events companies to access the support measures announced by the Chancellor in the Winter Economy Plan. We write to propose an urgent support package for the sector.

We understand the challenging decisions the government must take to control the spread of the virus whilst mitigating its economic and social impact. However, the Prime Minister’s announcement last week means that the once vibrant and growing UK events industry has been closed by the Government, and this is certain to have catastrophic employment consequences across the UK.

Britain’s events sector employs around 600,000 people, with the exhibitions sector alone supporting some 114,000 of those jobs. Although nearly 60% of events and exhibitions businesses benefited from the Government’s job retention scheme, its forthcoming cessation will leave the sector, its employees and the communities in which it operates in uniquely exposed, having been one of the only sectors not allowed to reopen during the summer.

The Events Industry Alliance (EIA) anticipates that 80% of the exhibitions sector workforce (consisting of events suppliers, organisers and venues), over 90,000 people, will be made redundant in the coming weeks due to continued event closures and the inability of their employers to access the new Job Support Scheme as they are not able to trade at all during the time and therefore will have no income to pay employees.

A recent survey highlighted the significant impact on companies’ revenues due to the Government’s closure of events. This showed that events suppliers expected their revenues in November to be only 8% of pre-COVID levels, with corresponding figures of 9% for events venues and 13% for event organisers.

Targeted Government support is urgently needed for the industry to survive. We therefore propose that the Government develops an ‘Events Industry Hibernation Support Package’ consisting of the following proportionate, time-limited measures to address its unique circumstances:

– An adapted wage subsidy scheme, with a temporary higher Government contribution to event companies’ employment costs, reflecting that Government restrictions are preventing them from generating revenues;-  A regular review process with clear criteria and industry involvement to assess the ability of COVID-secure events to resume at a future date. This would enable both for companies in the sector to prepare for a resumption of events and for temporary Government support measures to be tapered off as the sector is reopened and starts to generate revenues, which it is confident of doing; and,

–  An enhanced grant and loan scheme offered to companies in the sector whilst it remains closed by the Government. The support package would be time-limited and would be entirely contingent on the sector not being able to trade. The support should be offered on an opt-in basis, with the most severely impacted companies applying for additional employment cost contributions and/or grants or loans. The sector stands ready to provide the Government with any information it would need to develop and define the scope of these and any other measures. We are not an unviable sector and simply require support to survive until the time is right to resume events, at which point we can return to our role of driving growth in the wider economy. Before COVID-19, the events industry was a vibrant, growing sector; contributing some £70bn of economic impact to the UK, with trade shows and consumer exhibitions some £11bn. The sector also supports a further 180,000 businesses, many of whom are SMEs, who rely on exhibitions and events to meet customers and generate sales across every market and industry sector. The sector is also a vital contributor to the UK’s economic competitiveness, and acts as the UK’s shop window to the world, enabling companies from a wide range of sectors to meet prospective customers, generating sales and driving UK exports. International competitors such as France and Germany recognise the vital contribution their events industries make to their own economies and have taken steps to permit COVID-secure events to continue.

These and other countries are also providing more targeted support to help their events sectors get through these tough times. This is a highly mobile sector and the UK faces fierce international competition. We remain confident that UK exhibitions can take place safely when the time is right to resume them with the robust health and safety measures already successfully demonstrated in the recent pilot. We have welcomed the engagement we have had with the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport on the steps the sector will be able to take to control the environments we create as ‘organised gatherings’ through a risk assessed approach, including (but not limited to) sophisticated track and trace measures to ensure public safety is maintained, and we look forward to continuing that dialogue.

However, vital parts of the ecosystem needed to resume events in the UK will cease to exist in the coming weeks, with catastrophic employment consequences, if targeted Government action is not taken now. We hope that you will look favourably on this proposal and we and our teams stand ready to work with your officials to develop this proposed package of sector support measures. Yours sincerely, Association of Event Organisers, Association of Event Venues, Event Supplier & Services Association & 334 Member Organisations (overleaf) CC:

Alok Sharma, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Oliver Dowden, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport

2 Heads Global Design Ltd

4D Design & Display Ltd

73 Media Ltd

A1 Event & Exhibition Cleaners Ltd Aboveline Ltd

Abraxys Ltd

ACC Liverpool

ADD Enterprise

Agility Logistics Ltd

Aim Exhibitions Ltd

Alfa Display And Design Ltd Aluvision NV


AMP Events

Anti Copying in Design Ltd (Acid) Apex.co.uk


Aspect Exhibitions

ATD Electrical Ltd


Aztec Event Services Ltd

Backstage Hospitality Service UK Ltd Bang on Ltd

Bauer Media – B2B & Transport

BCD M&E – Accommodation Services Beazley Group

beMatrix UK Ltd

Bill Bowden Event Logistics Ltd

Bill Moule & Sons Ltd

BJA Design and Exhibitions Ltd

Blue Hedgehog Displays Ltd

Borough Bench Media Ltd Bournemouth International Centre Brand Events

Brand Saints Ltd

Bray Leino Events

Briggs Equipment UK Ltd

Brintex Ltd

British Toy & Hobby Association Broadway Events

BtoB Events ltd

Business Design Centre

CBRE Managed Services Ltd

CC Exhibitions Ltd

CDI UK | Clements & Street

CEVA Showfreight

CFH Solutions Ltd

Charles Twite & Co Ltd

Immediate Media Co. Incendo Europe Ltd Indalo International Ltd Index Group

InEvexco Ltd

Infinity Colour Ltd

Infinity Colour Ltd

Informa Markets

Information Technology Rentals Ltd

Inovent Exhibitions Ltd

Inside Events Ltd

Insite Marketing Solutions Limited/Insite Graphics INTERFACE UK LTD

Interlink Design and Display Ltd

International Lifting & Shipping

Joe Manby Ltd

Jungheinrich UK Limited

Kent Event Centre

Korten Ltd

KR Exhibition Services

KRM Safety Management Ltd

Kudos Exhibitions Ltd

L C Events Ltd

Leach Impact

Leading Edge Design

Level 29 (t/a Gleanin)




MA Exhibitions

Mack Brooks Exhibitions Ltd

Maelstrom Event Solutions Limited

Manchester Central

Markey Coffee Communication

Mash Media Group Ltd

Mash Media Services Ltd

Media 10 Limited

MediaCo Ltd

Mems International

Messe Frankfurt UK LTD

Millbrook Events

Mind Body & Spirit

Modex Exhibitions

Montgomery Group

Moore Kingston Smith

Moore People

NAEC Stoneleigh

Nest Studios

CHS Group


Clarion Events Ltd

Clip International Ltd

CloserStill Media

Comexposium UK Ltd

Concept Furniture International Ltd Concept G Exhibitions and Events (Pty) Ltd Cook and Associates

Courts Design Ltd

Create AV (UK) Ltd

Creative Hire Ltd

Creative Logistix Solutions Ltd (CLS) Creative8 Limited

Creator International ltd

Cvent Inc

Cvent Inc

D Donovan and Sons (Carpet Services) Ltd Datalead Ltd

DB Pixelhouse Ltd DC3 Design Ltd DCE Group DConcept

DD Exhibitions

Design Built Exhibitions Ltd

DHL Trade Fairs & Events (UK) Limited

Dijon Exhibition Design Co Ltd

Display Revolution Ltd

Display Wizard Ltd

Diversified Communications UK

dmg Events

DMN designbuild

Dobson Brown Ltd

Dods Group PLC

DSA Limited

Duncan Sword Construction

DVV Media HR Group Ltd

D-Zine Furnishing Solutions Ltd

East of England Arena and Events Centre Eastern Exhibition & Displays



Edge Exhibition Design Limited

Eikon Exhibition Centre


Elevations Exhibition Design and Management ELS Displays Ltd

Engage Business Media

New Dimension Exhibitions Ltd New Scientist Ltd

Nimlok Limited

NJM (UK) Ltd

Northstar Travel Media Oliver Kinross

Olympia London Omanexpo LLC


Ottimo Digital Ltd

OX2P Ltd

P&J Live

Park Display Ltd

Perform Logistics Ltd

Perton Signs Ltd

PLASA Events Ltd


Press Red Rentals Ltd

Priority Exhibitions


Prospects Events

Publicity Systems Ltd

QD Events Ltd

Qdos Exhibitions Ltd

Quartz Business Media

Quattro Display Ltd


Raccoon Events

Rapid News Publications Ltd


Reed Exhibitions

Reeds Carpeting Contractors Ltd

Remote Audio Visual

Resolutions Ltd

Ricoh Arena

RMC Digital Print Ltd

Rocket Exhibition And Events

Rocket Exhibition Services Ltd

Rocket Graphics Ltd

Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea Royal College of Physicians

Royal Highland Centre

RTD Systems

Sandown Park Racecourse

Saturn Exhibitions

Scan Display Solutions (Pty) Ltd

Scottish Event Campus (SEC)

Sector Global Limited

Enigma Creative Solutions Ltd Envisage

Equinox Design Ltd


Europa International Exhibition Services Ltd Event Exhibition and Design Limited

Event Exhibition Services Ltd

Event Support Solutions

EventCity Ltd

EventCreate Ltd

Events Service LDA Limited

EventShaper Ltd

Evolve Creative Solutions Ltd

ExCeL London

Exhibit 3Sixty Ltd

Exhibit Designers And Producers Association

Exhibition and Event Carpeting Company Ltd

Exhibition Freighting G.S.M Ltd

Exhibition Girls Ltd

Exhibition Power Limited

Exhibition Services Ltd



Expo Floors Ltd

Expose Designs

EXSA (Exhibition Association of Southern Africa)

Extreme Exhibitions Ltd

F2F Events Ltd

Farnborough International Exhibition and Conference Centre Farnborough International Limited

Faversham House Group Ltd


Fitz All Media Ltd

Floor 2000 Ltd

Floorex Carpets Ltd

Fluency Marketing

Fordmmp Limited

Foremarke Exhibitions Ltd

Formula Exhibitions Ltd

Forum Events Ltd

Fret Free Productions (Europe) Co Ltd

Full Circle Events & Exhibitions Ltd

Gallowglass Health & Safety LLP

Genesis 3D Design Ltd

GH Display

Giant iTab

GL Events

Global Displays Ltd

Sedef London

Sharman Shaw Exhibitions Ltd


Show Data Systems Ltd

Showlite Ltd

Sirius Conference And Events Ltd

Sistemas de Exposicion

Skala Contracts Ltd

Skyline Whitespace Exhibitions Ltd

Smart AV UK Ltd

Smart Digital TV Ltd

Smart Display & Exhibitions

Smarter Shows Ltd


Solutions 2 (UK) Ltd

Sommer Event Flooring Ltd

SQM sp. z.o.o. sp.k

Stadium MK


Standbuilder.co.uk Ltd

Symbiosis UK Ltd

T2 Display Ltd

Tag Digital Ltd

Tarsus Exhibitions Ltd

Taylex Displays Ltd

Tech AV Ltd

Telford International Centre

Tembo Ltd

Terrapinn Ltd


The Barista

The Black Pear

The Brighton Centre

The Event & Exhibition Partnership Ltd

The Event Co – London Ltd

The Exhibition Agency Ltd

The Freeman Company (UK) Ltd

The Inside BV

The Intershell Group

The Kia Oval

The Manufacturing Technology Association – MTA The NEC

The O2

The QMJ Group Ltd

The Silverstone Wing

Thorns Group

Thorns Group

Tobacco Dock

Global Experience Specialists (GES) GovNet Communications Harrogate Convention Centre

Hart Wilcox Production Company Heckford Exhibitions

Henson Franklyn Ltd

Highfields International Exhibition Services Ltd Hirex Ltd

Hollywood Monster Ltd

Hytex Communication Services Ltd

Hyve Group

IBC (International Broadcasting Convention)

ICC Belfast

ICC Wales & Celtic Manor


Icon Exhibitions and Display Ltd


IET – The Institution of Engineering and Technology IFES AISBL


Iguana Exhibitions Limited

Imagine Events Limited


Total Expo Ltd

Towergate Coverex

Trades Exhibitions Ltd

UKI Media & Events

Ungerboeck Systems International GmbH

Unique Exhibitions

Universal Services (GB) Ltd t/a Media Hut

University of Lincoln: Design for Exhibition & Museums Vectorworks UK Ltd

Vividfish Ltd

Vividink Ltd

Vortex Events Ltd

Ways & Means Events Ltd

West End Studios Ltd

White Rose Exhibitions Ltd

William Reed Business Media Ltd

Worldwide Exhibition Specialists Ltd

Xpo Team

X-Venture Ltd

Yorkshire Event Centre Ltd

It will be interesting to see the response from the authorities on these latest developments.