COVID-19: unexpected choral clampdown

One more Step along the world I go…(or not)

The commencement of Step 3 in the relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions on 17 May 2021 was triggered by The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (Steps and Other Provisions) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2021 SI/2021/585 (“the Amendment Regulations”); these made changes to the “Steps Regulations” and other provisions, infra.

On 14 May, MHCLG issued guidance on the safe use of places of worship, about which we posted here. This and other guidance has proved highly problematic with regard to singing by professional and non-professionals singers alike, although the restrictions for non-professionals are proving particularly onerous§. Not only was the tightening of the provisions in the guidance unexpected – the “relaxed” Step 3 is more onerous than the earlier Step 2 guidance – it was announced late in the day, and exhibited a lack of parity between restrictions placed on musical events and those placed on things such as sports events, pubs, and restaurants. Continue reading