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Over 1,000 Latitude Festival attendees test positive for Covid-19

The UK’s Latitude Festival has been linked to over 1,000 cases of Covid-19, new data suggests. 

The event took place July 22 to 25 at Henham Park in Suffolk and was part of the UK Government’s Events Research Programme (ERP) to gather information as it navigates the country out of the pandemic. 

Suffolk County Council said that following the event, 619 Latitude attendees had positive Covid-19 tests. 

Now, over 1,000 people that attended Latitude Festival have tested positive. Of the 1,051 people who have tested positive, 175 of those lived in Suffolk. 

The event asked for proof of double vaccination or a negative test, though reports say that over 400 people were potentially infectious during the event. 

Restrictions in England ended on 19 July, with the festival taking place just days later. Headline acts included Bastille, The Chemical Brothers and Bombay Bicycle Club with around 40,000 attendees present each day.  

Stuart Keeble, director of Suffolk Public Health, said: “Latitude Festival was part of an event research pilot by central Government, which set the parameters and covid guidance for the event…Covid is still circulating in the country and whilst the majority are double jabbed, we cannot be sure that those people around us won’t become very unwell if they catch it.” 

Surf and music festival Boardmasters in Newquay, UK, is also being investigated by health officials after almost 5,000 people tested positive for coronavirus following the event. Around 800 people linked to the August festival that tested positive lived in Cornwall. 

Much like Latitude Festival, entry requirements were in place for Boardmasters for ticket holders over the age of 11. Proof of double vaccination, with the second dose having been received in the last 14 days, a negative lateral flow test taken within 24 hours or natural immunity with a positive PCR test from at least 10 days earlier was required at the gates.

The news follows Friday’s update from the UK government on ERP data, which suggested that large events can be conducted safely. Citing National Health Service (NHS) data, it said that across the 37 test events that were included in the programme over a four-month period, the case numbers “were largely in line with our below community infection rates for the duration of the programme”. 

Image: John Such on Unsplash