As was increasingly expected given the ongoing restrictions imposed by the consequences of the Coronavirus pandemic in the UK, Kapitol Promotions has announced that the 2020 National Championship Finals, which were due to be held at Centaur at Cheltenham Racecourse and the Royal Albert Hall, have been cancelled.
It is the first time since the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939 that the event will not take place in London.
4BR understands that the final decision was delayed until the organisers, Kapitol Promotions, were given confirmation from the venues themselves.
In recent weeks, Craig Hassall, the CEO of the Royal Albert Hall had publically stated that without help the venue could shut for good by March 2021, as it would have been impossible to open under proposed social distancing guidelines.
It also follows the recent announcement of financial help given by the UK government to the arts sector to help venues get through the current COVID-19 crisis.
That has been widely interpreted as a scheme to be able them to take a scheduled step-by-step approach to full re-opening in 2021, as the Albert Hall in particular required a minimum 80% capacity to break-even on events.
In a statement issued on the Kapitol Promotions website on Thursday 9th July, Philip Morris stated: "Because of the current public health safety issues, regretfully we have had to cancel the Finals of the 2020 National Brass Band Championships of Great Britain at The Centaur, Cheltenham Racecourse (26th/27th September) and the Royal Albert Hall, London (10th October)."
He continued: "I would like to apologise for any inconvenience that this might have caused your band, but as you are aware the current circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic are beyond our control and, obviously, public safety must be our first priority."
...the current circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic are beyond our control and, obviously, public safety must be our first priorityKapitol Promotions
4BR understands that bands who have entered and paid their appropriate fee will refunded, whilst the 2019 trophies can remain in the possession of the champion band (subject to insurance cover) or returned.
For further information and contact enquires go to: http://kapitol.co.uk/news/662/finals-2020-cancelled