A Coventry establishment has claimed it is ‘probably’ the only venue in the city that does not need to have people out the door by 10pm.
The government’s 10pm curfew for pubs, bars and restaurants came into force last night (Thursday, September 24) in a bid to help stem the spread of coronavirus.
Many venues in Coventry have shared their outrage over the new rules with CoventryLive in our daily newsletter – with some going as far as to ban Prime Minister Boris Johnson from entering their premises.
But one city location, Rialto Plaza, has stated it will not be ushering people out the door two hours before midnight each evening.
The Coundon-based ‘multi-entertainments venue’ made the claim on its official Facebook page today.
It read: “Announcement on new timings! We are probably the only venue in Coventry that doesn’t need to kick you out at 10pm!
“We have had government guidance that as we are a Live entertainment venue we do not need to close at 10pm providing any live entertainment starts before 10pm. As we are required to close our bar from 10pm we are adjusting opening and closing times to allow guests more drinking time if preferred.”
Although restrictions were lifted for venues in August, the Rialto management team delayed opening to October to ensure they could open safely and in adherence to government guidelines.
James Penny, promoter at the Rialto Plaza said: “I believe we are the only venue in Coventry that can open beyond 10pm and we have a unique opportunity to provide live entertainment in a safe and secure environment.
“Our venue has several inherent features that make it safe to attend. In particular we have a huge space so we can sell tickets on a table only basis allowing groups to remain in their social bubbles.
“We’re embracing the space that we have and innovating as much as we can whilst taking all necessary precautions to ensure the safety of our audiences and full event team.
“It’s really important for both the local community and our staff that we open as soon as we can as safely as we can. Hopefully we can help create a blueprint for other live entertainment spaces to open safely and be part of the process of restoring employment within the live events space. We can not wait to welcome audiences back to our venue from next week.”
Theatres and cinemas were exempt from the curfew but there was initial confusion as to whether music venues would be impacted. The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has since confirmed that dedicated music venues may conclude after the 10pm curfew as long as a performance starts before 10pm, however outlets, including bars, must be closed by this point.
Rialto’s events begin on Friday, October 2 with ‘The Big Quiz’ followed by an R&B Live on October 10 and UB42 on October 17.