Notting Hill Carnival to Be Cancelled If Social Distancing Remains in Force

Notting Hill Carnival to Be Cancelled If Social Distancing Remains in Force

Notting Hill Carnival will be cancelled for the second year in a row this year if social distancing measures remain in place, the event’s organiser has said.

Chief Executive of Notting Hill Carnival Ltd, Matthew Phillip, gave an update on the future of the event when speaking to the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee.

Mr Phillip told MPs social distancing during Carnival weekend “would pose a very big problem”.

“It would be very difficult to hold Carnival in its traditional format on the streets with social distancing in place. It would be devastating for a second year in a row,” Mr Phillip said.

When asked if it would result in the cancellation of the event, Mr Phillip replied “yes”, but said he would make an effort to run Carnival in a differnt format.

He added: “It would not take place in its traditional format. We would always hope to do something.

“Carnival means too much to too many people for us to simply ignore it so we would always try to find a way of celebrating Carnival for its artistry and what it means to the community.”

News of the potential cancellation of this year’s Carnival comes after the annual event was axed last year for the first time in its 54-year history due to the coronavirus pandemic.

However, a virtual event took place instead in the form of Access All Areas.

Mr Phillip said the next three months will be “key” in seeing what will be allowed this year, and will “continue to plan” in the meantime.

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