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Press release: Greater support needed for Showpeople

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Glasgow East MP David Linden has called upon the UK Government to provide financial support for the Show People community which has suffered great financial loss due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the Prime Minister’s COVID-19 statement today, Glasgow East MP David Linden highlighted the impact of the pandemic on fairs and showgrounds.

A longstanding supporter and advocate for show people, David Linden MP is part of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Fairs and Showgrounds.

At the outset of the pandemic, many fairs were either cancelled or postponed – from summer fetes to Christmas Markets.

As a result of the closures and postponing of fairs, many show people suffered huge financial loss, plunging them into financial insecurity.

At the heart of the issue that the financial support offered to the tourism industry during COVID-19 continually excluded the fairground community.

Showmen also did not qualify for the assistance announced in the recent budget for retail, leisure and hospitality firms relating to business rates in the coming year, due to the way that the Showmen operate, which falls outside the scope of static leisure providers.

Show people across the UK now face losing their businesses and livelihoods if the UK Government does not step in.

Challenging the Prime Minister in the House of Commons today, Glasgow East MP David Linden said that show people should no longer be ‘overlooked’ by the UK Government.

Speaking from the House of Commons, David Linden MP said:

"Throughout this pandemic countless jobs and industries have been affected. Particularly, the Fairs and Showground community have faced disproportionate financial hardship this year.

"After the cancellation and postponing of almost all of this year fairs, and now the exclusion from UK Government financial packages, many show people will be facing huge loss in revenues.

"I have spoken to countless show people during this pandemic, who have highlighted to me the profound impact that COVID-19 has had on their livelihoods and businesses.

"I am calling on the UK Government to put forward concrete plans to support Show people and their businesses survive through the second wave of COVID-19 cases.

"It is absolutely vital that the UK Government no longer overlooks the fairs and showgrounds community and instead offers real and significant financial support."

Photo credit: Chris Aitken from Flickr under a Creative Commons attribution licence.


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