Wiltshire Council has confirmed that, subject to the decision being called-in by councillors, its live entertainment venue, City Hall in Salisbury, will remain temporarily closed for the foreseeable future until it is deemed safe and financially viable to reopen.
With the future of indoor performances currently uncertain, the council has made the decision now to suspend the current programme of events, scheduled to begin again next year, and will look to reopen the venue when the industry is on a surer footing.
This means that any events currently on the schedule will not take place, and customers will receive a full refund on any tickets they’ve bought.
With COVID-19 putting increased financial pressures on the council it was deemed the most sensible option to take now to remove any immediate uncertainty.
Wiltshire Council’s cabinet made this decision at their meeting on 13 October. The decision is still subject to a councillor call-in period, which comes to an end on 22 October.
Staff affected by the decision have been kept fully up to date on the situation and some will be redeployed where possible.
Cllr Richard Clewer, Deputy Leader of Wiltshire Council and Cabinet Member for Heritage, Arts and Tourism, said: “Given the uncertainty of the indoor entertainment industry at this time, we think this is a sensible option.
“We know how popular City Hall is, but this has been an unprecedented time that has had a huge impact on the industry and our finances.
“At the moment, with COVID-19 cases rising nationally, we cannot say with any certainty when performances can re-commence in 2021. In light of this it makes sense to formalise a temporary closure.
“I’d like to thank all the City Hall staff for their professionalism at an unsettling time.”
Staff from City Hall will start to contact customers soon to arrange refunds on any performances booked, so there is no need for people to request refunds or make contact. People’s patience is very appreciated while this work is carried out.