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Culture and Sports: Coronavirus

Question for Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

UIN 181008, tabled on 14 April 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will bring forward proposals to classify sporting and cultural venues as vital national infrastructure under schedule 22 of the Coronavirus Act 2020.

Answered on

21 April 2021

The Government has no current plans to revise the list of sectors designated as critical national infrastructure.

Schedule 22 of the Coronavirus Act 2020 confers powers to the Secretary of State to prohibit or restrict events or gatherings in England. This includes imposing restrictions on the persons entering or remaining on the premises.These regulations are not applicable to any changes in the list of sectors designated as critical national infrastructure.

The government has worked to protect cultural and sporting venues during the lockdown to save sports facilities, theatres, concert halls and live music performance venues for future generations. In July 2020, MHCLG announced changes to the planning system to protect buildings that are an intrinsic part of our cultural heritage. This move was announced alongside the £1.57 billion investment to protect Britain’s cultural, arts and heritage sector and provide extra security to businesses as they plan to reopen their premises when it is safe to do so.

The government has also provided £1.8 billion of public support to the sport sector in response to the pandemic to ensure facilities are able to reopen when it is safe for them to do so.