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UK Government: COVID-19 updates

In this section, you can find a selection of resources and signposting to key information relating to the UK Government’s COVID-19 response and recent updates. The UK Government has full responsibility for the current Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and the Self Employed Income Support Scheme, for guidelines relating to devolved matters please visit our Scottish Government updates here.

Financial Support

UK Government SEISS 5th Grant now open 
The 5th SEISS grant covers 1 May to 30 September 2021 (five calendar months). For the first time, the grant includes a ‘turnover test’ which will inform how much you receive. MoneySavingExpert have pulled together a really handy overview of the recent updates and a guide on how to apply which you can read via the link below.
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UK Government Furlough Scheme ending 
As previously announced, the Furlough scheme will end on 30 September. There has been no indication from the UK Government if other forms of financial support will take its place. Again, MoneySavingExpert has a great overview of the scheme, how it is working, and the updates regarding its eventual winding down at the end of next month. 
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UK Government announce insurance scheme 
On 5 August the Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced a new UK Government-backed  insurance scheme worth over £750 million, with the aim of helping the sector plan events ‘with confidence’ through to next year. UK Theatre/ SOLT released a statement following the announcement which echoes many of the concerns raised regarding these outlined plans. The scheme will be available from September 2021 and run until the end of September 2022.  
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Working Safely Guidance

The UK Government guidance for people who work in performing arts, including arts organisations, venue operators and participants can be found here. Please note this guidance is not applicable in Scotland, however, it is similar to the Scottish Government guidance and may be useful for reference.

FST continues to work with UK Theatre and other professional bodies across the UK to advocate for as consistent an approach as possible across the entire UK sector.