Plans to only let double-jabbed people into nightclubs revealed on same day as they open for first time in 16 months branded "ridiculous"

There has been a mixed reaction to the latest government ruling that from Autumn, people will have to prove that they have had both COVID jabs before they can get into a nightclub.

Wednesday, 21st July 2021, 6:16 am

On the day that clubs were able to open for the first time in 16 months, it was later announced by the vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi that a negative Covid-19 test would soon "no longer be sufficient" proof that a person was Covid-safe.

He said: "We will be keeping a close watch on how it is used by venues and reserve the right to mandate if necessary. By the end of September everyone aged 18 and over will have the chance to receive full vaccination and the additional two weeks for that protection to really take hold.

"So at that point we plan to make full vaccination a condition of entry to nightclubs and other venues where large crowds gather. Proof of a negative test will no longer be sufficient."

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Clubbers queue to get into the Viaduct in Leeds on the first day that nightclubs could re-open after 16 months.

Boris Johnson warned that "some of life's most important pleasures and opportunities are likely to be increasingly dependent on vaccination" as he reiterated the plans in the Downing Street press conference.

Michael Kill, chief executive officer of the Night Time Industries Association (NTIA), described the plans as an "absolute shambles" amid concerns over further damage being done to the night time entertainment industry and difficulties in enforcing it.

He said: "So, 'freedom day' for nightclubs lasted around 17 hours then. The announcement from the Prime Minister that Covid passports will be made mandatory for nightclubs in September comes after his Health Secretary said only one week ago that they would not be compulsory. What an absolute shambles.

"Leaving aside the fact that this is yet another chaotic U-turn that will leave nightclubs who have been planning for reopening for months will now have to make more changes to the way they operate - this is still a bad idea.

"80 per cent of nightclubs have said they do not want to implement Covid passports, worrying about difficulties with enforcing the system and a reduction in spontaneous consumers, as well as being put at a competitive disadvantage with pubs and bars that aren't subject to the same restrictions and yet provide similar environments."

In Leeds, the news was met with differing opinions and the belief that it was a way to enforce the vaccine on younger people if they wanted to get on with 'normal' life.

Commenting on the Yorkshire Evening Post facebook page, Lisa Clee said: "It's ridiculous just another thing to get the youngsters to have the vaccine. Disgusting."

Andy Daly said: "So you go to a venue, you've just had a negative test that day and you can't get in, whereas someone who was vaccinated 2 months ago and may well be infectious can get in. Do you see how absolutely ridiculous that is."

Amy Elizabeth wrote: "It's the government's way of taking away our freedom and forcing people to have the vaccine to be able to enjoy life."

Jonathan Crawley said: "The only people that want them don't go to nightclubs" but Jade Mallinson said: "I am more than happy to carry a vaccine passport if it means I can go on with my life as normal and for those who didn't want a vaccine or can't for medical reasons a negative test should be presented."

Sarah Hill added: "I don't think it would be feasible/legal to insist upon vaccine passports, but doing something with a negative test result would surely be better and more safe."