Blossoms to headline COVID-19 pilot gig in Liverpool with no social distancing

A coronavirus pilot concert has been announced in Liverpool, with Blossoms set to headline the May event.

The gig, dubbed Sefton Park Pilot, comes as part of a host of government-organised pilot events in the lead up to England gradually exiting lockdown by the end of June.

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5,000 fans will be able to attend the May 2 event in Sefton Park, which normally holds 7,500 gig-goers. Attendees will have to take a lateral flow COVID-19 test at a local testing centre prior to being granted entry, as well as another test after the show. During the show, they will not be asked to wear masks or practice social distancing.


Tickets for the show – which will also feature The Lathums and Zuzu – can be purchased here on a one-ticket-per-person basis from 10am BST today (April 18), and is only available for Liverpool city region residents.


The gig is being organised by promoters Festival Republic, whose boss Melvin Benn said: “Live music is a must have in my life, and a year without it is a year too long. The Sefton Park Pilot is the most important event in the Event Research Programme for getting festivals back this year and I’m delighted to play my part.

“It’s not about vaccines, it’s not about passports, it’s not about limiting it to a section of society only: it’s about a universal approach to our love of live music for all and demonstrating we can do it safely.”

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden added: “We’re one step closer to a summer of live events now our science-led programme is underway. Testing different settings and looking at different mitigations is key to getting crowds back safely and the Sefton Park pilot is an important addition to the programme.

“After many months without live audiences, Festival Republic are bringing live music back to fans with this very special event and I hope it won’t be too much longer until gigs are back for good.”


The new concert comes as part of a bigger plan for a number of venues in Liverpool to take part in the pilot scheme to test crowd safety before coronavirus lockdown rules are eased this summer.

It was revealed last month that a dozen test events were being planned across the UK in the run-up to lockdown being further eased. The events – which come under the umbrella of the Events Research Programme (ERP) – included the World Snooker Championship final this weekend (April 17), as well as the football FA Cup final at Wembley Stadium on May 15, and the BRIT Awards at London’s O2 Arena two days later.