(Credit: Leeds Festival)

Organisers say coronavirus passports are not required for live events pilot

The organisers behind events listed in the government’s pilot scheme to test live indoor event safety have said COVID-19 passports will not be required for audiences.

There are nine events currently named in the pilot programme, and five have now revealed that they will not be asking crowds to show proof of vaccination for entry. The news comes after the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport’s (DCMS) confirmed that the NHS is designing a system that will allow attendees to use an app or a paper certificate to attend the proposed trial events across April and May.

In light of these comments by the government official, the pilot events’ organisers have rubbished the suggestion of COVID-19 passports. One organiser anonymously told The Guardian that they had suffered a “massive backlash” following the news.

Liverpool City Council is organising a comedy gig, an outdoor cinema, a business conference and a club night as part of the pilot scheme. An official from the council informed the publication that the government briefing yesterday was false.

However, a spokesperson for the World Snooker Championship in Sheffield revealed that the event would need testing for fans, but they aren’t going to ask for vaccination certification.

The DCMS has now said that the venues taking part in the pilot would only need audience members to prove a negative test to enter. However, they added they are currently contemplating a certification scheme for the FA Cup semi-final.

They stated that the system would use vaccination status; therefore, a recent negative coronavirus test result would be necessary or “natural immunity”. With the latter meaning, a positive test in the last six months.