After Boris Johnson announced his roadmap out of lockdown this week, hopes have been raised that we could see a return of mass events this summer.
On Monday, the prime minister announced a series of dates for when he hopes certain restrictions in England can end – with outdoor performances for maximum of 4,000 people and indoor performances with a 50% reduction in capacity potentially allowed from 17 May.
The government then hopes to lift all remaining restrictions on social contact by 21 June at the earliest – meaning larger gatherings could feasibly go ahead from that point.
However, the route out of lockdown will depend on how high coronavirus cases, deaths and hospital admissions are, and whether numbers are continuing to fall following the mass vaccination effort.
Before each step of the roadmap is confirmed, just one week’s notice will be given – meaning organisers of events having to take risks now to commit to going ahead.
In the face of the current optimistic numbers some organisers have said they will be going ahead with their events – while others, including Glastonbury, have already cancelled.
Which music festivals are going ahead in 2021?
The biggest news so far is that this year’s Reading and Leeds music festivals will go ahead, taking place between 27 and 29 August – over two months after the planned end of COVID restrictions.
Confirming their 2021 events would take place, the official Reading and Leeds Twitter account posted: “Following the government’s recent announcement, we can’t wait to get back to the fields this summer. LET’S GO.”
Reading’s promoter Melvin Benn promoter told BBC Radio 4's PM programme he believed all adults would be offered a second vaccine by mid-August – two or three weeks before Reading and Leeds.
South London’s Gala dance music festival in Peckham’s Rye Park is also returning this year between 31 July and 1 August.
Manchester’s Parklife festival will take place in September this year, while tickets are on sale for Field Day London – which is taking place on 10 July.
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El Dorado Festival in Herefordshire is also set to take place just after the planned ending of COVID restrictions. The website is offering tickets between 1 July and 4 July.
The four-day Bestival in Dorset is also set to go ahead from 29 July to 1 August, while dance festival Creamfields will see a return between 26 and 29 August – the same bank holiday weekend that the Reading and Leeds festival takes place.
Suffolk's Latitude festival is expected to make an announcement about its plans for 2021 in the near future.
Which sporting events will let fans in this summer?
With several major sporting events taking place over the summer months, there is now renewed hope that fans could actually attend as many fall after restrictions are lifted.
The government is planning carry out a series of test events using various safety measures for larger crowds – meaning that a limited amount of fans could show up for the League Cup final at Wembley in April, as well as the FA Cup final on 15 May.
The Premier League final day takes place on 23 May – days after larger numbers of fans will be permitted into stadiums, meaning thousands could watch their teams play for the first time in over a year.
A series of international cricket tests take place from June to September, while the Rugby Union premiership final could see a packed Twickenham stadium as it takes place on 26 June – five days after the planned ending of COVID restrictions.
Wimbledon takes place in the final week of June and the first week of July, which could see a return of a capacity Centre Court for the biggest tournament in the tennis calendar.
Golf’s Open Championship is set to start on 15 July while the British Grand Prix at Silverstone takes place three days later.
Meanwhile Royal Ascot and the Epsom Derby take place just days before full restrictions are due to end – but they still fall after the 17 May date, meaning punters could place bets and watch their horse pay out for them away from their sofas.
Away from sporting and live music events, the Pride Parade is back on this year, with organisers setting the date for London Pride on 26 July, saying it “promises to be one of the greatest additions to the history of the event”.
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