Published on: 17 September 2020BOATS2020 which was due to take place from 11-20 September 2020 and was cancelled on the evening of Thursday 10 September, despite having a licence which was issued on 28 July, and having been setup to the strict requirements of Southampton City Council’s Public Health England COVID-19 secure requirements, has failed in its appeal to the Secretaries of State for Public Health and Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
We had been assured by Southampton City Council that the event was in full compliance with current UK Government guidelines as well as the new rules set to come into effect on Monday 14 September. Just hours before the show was due to open, on the afternoon of Thursday 10 September, Southampton City Council representatives had reviewed the show site and requested only one site amendment: to remove a panel in the site entrance security marquee to increase airflow, which was implemented immediately.
The show plans were developed alongside Southampton City Council using the Events Industry Forum and Digital, Culture, Media and Sport guidance, Association of Events Organisers (AEO) All Secure Standard and other contributions from exhibitors and industry.
Lesley Robinson, CEO of British Marine, said; “I am saddened that our appeal has been rejected and the plight of our exhibitors and the industry has not been recognised by the Secretaries of State. The cancellation of the show will have a considerable financial impact on the marine industry, and also on the city of Southampton. We are now considering all options available and what we can do for British Marine members and all show exhibitors.”
British Marine is continuing to support BOATS2020 exhibitors through publicising their open days and offers online and creating leads and prospects.