Midway through last month, British lawmakers announced that indoor events would be allowed starting August 1st. U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson has now extended restrictions preventing such gatherings to August 15th, 2020.
The decision follows Johnson’s warning on Friday that a “second wave” of COVID-19 may be underway, citing a 63% increase in cases over two weeks. According to the Telegraph, experts are divided on his outlook. Some say that the prediction of a second spike operates on the assumption that the coronavirus behaves similarly to the Spanish influenza epidemic, which they argue has not been determined.
Although the extension spells trouble for U.K. music venues, recently announced guidance may prevent many of them from being forced to close permanently. At the end of July, Arts Council England set aside £500 million in grants for nightclubs, bars and other spaces sidelined by the COVID-19 crisis.
Johnson’s guidance also applies to casinos, bowling alleys and ice rinks in addition to weddings of up to 30 people.