Published: October 13, 2020 | Updated: October 13, 2020

#WeMakeEvents Survival Tour bike ride to call into Bournemouth to highlight plight of sector

Five of the cyclists on the #WeMakeEvents Survival Tour bike ride.
By Andrew Diprose, editor

A 930-mile charity bike ride highlighting the plight of the UK’s £84bn events sector is to arrive in Bournemouth today, Wednesday.

More than 200 professionals from event businesses in and around Bournemouth and Poole – and dressed in red – are expected to give a raptuous welcome to the six riders when they call in at key Bournemouth venues, the BIC and Pavilion, from 5pm.

Tomorrow, Thursday, the six industry veterans, who have worked with the likes of Coldplay, The Rolling Stones and Taylor Swift, will visit Chapel Gate, home of the Bournemouth 7s Festival, the world’s largest sport and music festival, at 9am.

What’s been dubbed #TheSurvivalTour set out from Newcastle on Saturday October 3 in support of the #WeMakeEvents campaign.

It aims to drive awareness of the plight of the events and entertainment business due to the coronavirus crisis and raise money for Backup charity, which provides financial support for the entertainment industry.

The three Bournemouth venues are among 50 standing empty since lockdown which are included on the tour.

The riders plan to arrive in London on Saturday October 17.

To support the initiative, you can join the team for a day’s bike ride by registering or donating.

Steve Reynolds, of production firm Loudsound, who is leading the tour, said: “Having worked in the entertainment and events business for so many years we all felt we HAD to do something.

“Both to raise awareness to the public, who rarely see us behind the scenes, and inform the government of the impending collapse of this sector.

“One that has grown year-on-year and is regarded as the best in the world, and is on the brink of collapse.

“Most of our friends and colleagues work in this industry, we know their families and they are suffering.

“In fact, it’s like a big extended family, and we couldn’t stand by and let it just disappear without trying to help.

“So, to anyone reading, please come and join us (it’s imperative for safety and Covid compliance that everyone has to register) or, if you can, make a donation on our donations page, thank you so much.”

Gary White of #WeMakeEvents added, “We’re delighted Steve and the team are helping in this way.

“It’s a typically generous gesture that we’re used to seeing from this industry.

“We’re extremely aware that many in our industry are suffering a sharp decline in their mental health  and, with little or no work or income for the past six months and no prospect of jobs until at least spring 2021, it’s important that we all pull together and raise funds to help them.”

After Bournemouth the tour will go to Portsmouth, Brighton and then, finally, London.