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EVENTS PILOT: Liverpool welcomes audiences


The Government has announced details of the pilot events to be held in Liverpool.

The city is following in the footsteps of Amsterdam and Barcelona by participating in a science-led research programme to reopen the cultural and business sectors. The pilots will gather evidence and approaches to managing and mitigating transmission risk.

The Events Research Programme will be used to provide key scientific data into how events for a range of audiences could be permitted to safely reopen as part of Step 4 of the roadmap out of lockdown, commencing no earlier than June 21.

The review will be crucial to how venues – from major sport stadiums to comedy clubs, theatres to live music spaces, wedding venues to conference centres – could operate this summer.

The pilots will explore how different approaches to social distancing, ventilation and test-on-entry protocols could ease opening and maximise participation, including the use of lateral flow tests – but not so-called 'vaccine passports'.

The Government is working closely with the University of Liverpool and Culture Liverpool on the project, which follows on from the city's successful pilot Covid-19 testing programme for people without symptoms held last November.

Meanwhile the latest picture in the region is a mixed bag. Six neighbourhoods in our region are lagging behind in the decline of Covid-19 levels, with a rate above 100 cases per 100,000 people.

While cases have continued to decline slowly overall in recent weeks, some areas have case rates that remain too high.

Areas of Halton, Wirral, St Helens and Liverpool all have neighboourhoods that have case levels in the triple figures.

That is much higher than the average case rate in each of those boroughs.

Wirral's borough wide case rate stands at 24.4 cases per 100,000 people, but in Hoylake it is more than four times that.

Similarly, Haydock West in St Helens and Anfield West in Liverpool have infection rates more than three times the average.

Halton has three areas with a case rate of more than 100 cases per 100,000 people, reflecting the fact that the borough now has the highest infection rate in the city region.

It is hoped that infection levels will continue to ebb even as lockdown restrictions begin to ease.

Following the end of the "stay at home" rule, a further easing in ten days is likely to see the reopening of non-essential shops and hospitality outdoors.

Vaccinations continue to take place across the region, with all over 50s now being encouraged to get the jab.


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