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Cultural and Sporting Sectors: Covid-19

Volume 698: debated on Thursday 1 July 2021

What steps his Department is taking to open up the cultural and sporting sectors as covid-19 restrictions are eased. (902121)

We have provided unprecedented support for arts and sports and have only just opened up applications for the latest round of the £2 billion culture recovery fund. That will focus specifically on helping sectors to reopen fully. Our aim is, of course, to get everything—sports, live music and cultural events—back at full capacity from 19 July, and we are making good progress towards that goal.

The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care said that, if the direction of travel in respect of covid data is maintained, we will be able to have our terminus day on 19 July. Does my right hon. Friend agree with me that terminus day means an end to social distancing, an end to compulsory mask wearing and a full return to normal, not just for the end of July but permanently?

As my hon. Friend rightly says, and my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care has said, we are making very good progress towards 19 July. We are hopeful and, indeed, confident that we will be able to remove, as planned at stage 4, all the remaining legal limits on social contact, reopen the remaining closed settings and remove all limits on weddings and other life events. That is very much what I am working towards.