Southwater One – Light It In Red to support events industry
Telford & Wrekin Council will be backing the Light It In Red campaign tonight (MON 6 JUL) to show support for the events industry.
The landmark gold-clad building Southwater One will be lit up in red to help draw public attention to the industry's plight.
The council – which has had its own events like the Balloon Fiesta, Spring Into The Park and Telford Carnival cancelled – responded after a request from Telford resident and businessman Derek Tallent, of Madeley firm Press Red Rentals Ltd.
Derek had contacted council leader Councillor Shaun Davies by email to emphasise the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and subsequent lockdown on the events industry.
Derek said: “We are part of the exhibition and events industry, which has been dormant since early March.
“We were probably the first industry to be affected when trade shows started being cancelled from the middle of February and at the current time we have no indication from the government as to when we may get a date to restart work.
“The events industry comprises a number of different sectors, exhibtions and trade shows, festivals, concerts, theatres and conferences and the borough has a number of suppliers and venues all adversely affected by the lockdown.”
The events industry has organised the Light It In Red campaign to draw public attention to its plight. It encourages companies, venues and organisations to light buildings in red to symbolise the “red alert” level that industry is under due to restrictions on large scale events.
Councillor Carolyn Healy, Telford & Wrekin Council’s cabinet member for the Visitor Economy, said: “The effect on the events industry of the last few months cannot be overstated and it is very close to home for us at Telford & Wrekin Council.
“We have strived over the past few years to create a thriving events economy here in Telford and Wrekin which have really put the borough on the regional map.
“We were delighted to support the Light It In Red campaign to highlight the impact on companies like Press Red Rentals and many many others.
“We obviously welcome yesterday’s government announcement that it plans to provide funding to support the arts and culture sector but we are still waiting on the detail of what it will practically mean and what level of support we will receive.
“We look forward to receiving the criteria for the financial support and we hope it meets the need of this very important industry.
“We would like to see the money issued as soon as possible and I think councils can play a very important role in helping to ensure it gets to the right venues, events and businesses.”
The events industry is worth £70billion to the UK and employs 600,000 people.
More information can be found at www.lightitinred.co.uk