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Photo Credit: Parklife/Jenna Foxton

After a year of no festivals, partygoers are keener than ever to dance in a field again. Everyone attending an event in 2021 needs to play a part in keeping each other safe and minimising the risks from COVID-19.

We should feel confident that it is now considered safe for festivals to go ahead, but we all have our part to play. This article reflects the current UK Government guidelines and advice from Public Health England on COVID-19 safety at events.

Event organisers are working hard to ensure festivals comply with the most up to date guidance on COVID-19 safety. This includes protocols for their staff and enhanced hygiene.

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Photo Credit: Parklife

All In This Together

It’s been a strange and at times challenging year for most people. A festival is a community and now more than ever we must look after ourselves and each other.

– If this year will be your first time at a festival, make sure you read about what to expect here.
– Maybe you’ve been to events before the pandemic, but are feeling nervous about being back in big crowds and in the festival environment. Read more about looking after your mental health and wellbeing here.
– Whether you’re a first-timer or a hardened festival veteran, read about what to bring and how to prepare here.
– If you are planning on taking alcohol and other drugs, remember that your tolerance levels may have greatly reduced so go slow and stay low. Read more about how to reduce harm with alcohol and other drugs here.
– Over the past year there has been a rising movement globally to support positive change and acknowledge the experiences of those who are more at risk from incidents of sexual assault and harassment. Read more about safer spaces at festivals here.
– If you are working at a festival for the first time, read about what to expect here.

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Photo Credit: Y Not/Ross Entirety

Vaccination

Guests will not need to be vaccinated against COVID-19 to attend festivals. That said, one of the best ways to protect yourself and others from COVID-19 is to have two doses of the vaccination if you are willing and able.

Self-Isolating & Quarantine

If you are self-isolating or quarantining during the period when your festival takes place, it may be disappointing, but you should not attend the event and continue to isolate in line with UK Government guidelines.

Regular COVID-19 Testing

In order to help stop the spread of COVID-19, it is sensible for everyone to be regularly testing themselves using the free lateral flow tests provided by the NHS, especially if you are attending a festival.

COVID-19 Certification

Most events will have some kind of COVID-19 certification process as a condition of entry. This means they will ask you to prove your COVID-19 status with one of the following:

– proof of full COVID-19 vaccination both doses received at least 14 days before your arrival;
– proof of a negative NHS COVID-19 Lateral Flow Test taken within 48 hours of your arrival;
– proof of natural immunity based upon a positive PCR test taken within 180 days of the event (including 10 days self-isolation following the result).
– Many events will be using the NHS COVID Pass for certification, but some events may use alternative methods. You should check on your event website to see what they will require well in advance of the event.

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Photo Credit: Parklife/Justine Trickett

BE PREPARED

Part of the fun of a festival is the unexpected, but a little bit of planning will help you avoid a #FestivalFail of weekend ruining proportions.

Find out more about Festival Safe here