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Two Manchester music venues saved from closure

Two Manchester music venues have been saved from closure, while cinemas in Beijing are able to open from Friday…

Manchester venues

Manchester venues Gorilla and The Deaf Institute have been saved from closure after new buyers Tokyo Industries stepped in.

Former operator Mission Mars announced the closure of the venues last Thursday due to the struggles encountered by the COVID-19 enforced shutdown.

However, the new and former owners said in a joint statement this week that the venues would operate “in much the same way as they have done in the past” following the hand over.

Aaron Mellor, the founder of Tokyo Industries, said: “These are extremely difficult times for all grassroots music venues around the UK. It’s vital venues like Gorilla and the Deaf Institute are kept alive, the cultural fabric of our city centres depends on venues like these.

“Over the weekend, we’ve put together some great ideas with SSD Concerts and Tim Burgess [lead singer of alternative rock band The Charlatans] to help save both venues and their existing operating style in a post-Covid world. We’re not so keen on this ‘new’ normal and want to keep the ‘old’ normal alive for when we all get through this.”

Beijing cinemas

Cinemas in “low-risk” areas in Beijing will begin to reopen on Friday with attendance to be capped at 30 per cent.

Wang Jiequn, deputy director of the municipal Propaganda Department and director of the municipal film bureau announced yesterday that cinemas could resume business “in an orderly manner.”

The city’s 262 cinemas have been closed since January due to COVID-19.

“Each cinema can determine its own specific opening time based on its pandemic prevention measures in place and its own current situation,” a document issued by the body outlining new rules for theatres.

Cinemas are required to cap attendance at 30 per cent of maximum capacity, and only half the number of screenings typically shown during a normal period may be shown.

Customers will be required to have their temperature checked before entering and be able to show they are Covid-free via a QR code.

In addition, tickets must be pre-purchased online via real-name reservation systems and distributed via contactless methods on-site.

Last week, the China Film Administration (CFA) announced it would begin to reopen cinemas in China’s “low-risk regions” from July 20.

Image: deargdoom57 / CC BY 2.0 /Edited for size