Chair of Ashburton Arts, Su Maddock writes:
Government policy on Coranavirus is changing by the day.
Last week, government guidance focused on large venues and we as a small venue decided to put in place a disinfecting regime before and after each performances- this has been done and all volunteers and class tutors are adhering too.
Over the weekend the landscape has changed – it is now clear that the transfer of the virus is more likely in small social groups and between friends in smaller venues such as restaurants, pubs and Art’s centre; even if friends stop kissing and greet with a fist bump etc. The public are voting with their feet and not going to bars or eating in restaurants.
Ashburton Arts Centre in a small and intimate venue and fits this category and in the circumstances the board have decided to
– Cancel all March performances
– Close the centre for one month
We appreciate that the Arts Centre is a community venue and we do not want to close off space that is used for a plethora of meetings. However, any who hire rooms for classes have already cancelled classes until further notice and the Information Centre and the GP surgery.
While some may feel this is premature – it would be irresponsible not to close for events which put volunteers at risk, many of whom are older and vulnerable. Artists are understanding of this position and already alert to cancellation.
We will review how the centre is used in a month, when we may have more idea of the how the virus is spreading.
The more we act now the shorter this period will be.
Dr Su Maddock Chair