Sessions in the U.K. 2021?

Sessions in the U.K. 2021?

I’m looking at WHO advice that masks & social distancing will still be crucial after vaccination.

Any ideas on likely-hood of pub sessions in 2021?

My gut is telling me probably not.

Re: Sessions in the U.K. 2021?

Probably a similar story in Ireland, both North and South.

Re: Sessions in the U.K. 2021?

I reckon the enforced house arrest will continue for at least another year.

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Me too. 🙁 We’re gonna all be raging alcoholics who can’t remember any tunes by the end of this. Or maybe that’s just me.

Re: Sessions in the U.K. 2021?

There’ll be outdoor sessions when the weather improves and we’re hoping to return to our indoor sessions as soon as pub reopens. We were doing those with a group of six, socially distanced, well ventilated room (but unfortunately without flutes/whistles).

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As one of the over 80’s I will be up and ready soon, if you trust this government, however, and more importantly, will the pubs have survived to provide a venue?

Re: Sessions in the U.K. 2021?

The incompetents who claim to govern cannot use the bars and pubs as easy-target-whipping-boys for much longer without expecting a reaction. There is no empirical evidence of any persuasiveness which claims to prove that these venues are prime locations for virus spread, or at least more so than the schools, churches and so forth which remain open. Infections rise ever faster despite the forced closure of hospitality venues.

Discuss.

Having got that out of my system, I anticipate some sessions at least before the end of February.

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"There is no empirical evidence of any persuasiveness which claims to prove that these venues are prime locations for virus spread, …" Well, no, since they shut all the pubs and music hasn’t been allowed back in, there wouldn’t be, would there ?
Would you like to be the one to put it to the test ?

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Re: Sessions in the U.K. 2021?

I hope it is just you Dr SS - I discovered the hard way 40 years ago that booze is never the answer and though God knows its hard to get motivated I try to play at least a couple of times a week so the brain and fingers don’t seize up.

Re: Sessions in the U.K. 2021?

The pubs here were freely open during the ‘first wave’, all the way up to mid-March. They reopened early July to mid-October, and during that period, we "put it to the test", as you say, in what we considered a sensible and safe way. We have heard of no-one who used that pub testing positive, either within those three-and-a-half months or since. It’s a local, and we know most who use it.
Neither prior to March, nor in July-October, did the authorities collate figures relating to transmission in hospitality venues; even when test-and-trace was introduced, there was no specific category of transmission location assigned to pubs and bars: they fell, along with many varied locations, under the broad afterthought category of "other".
Major pub companies report a negligible number of contacts from the test-and-trace system. The sources are spread across many media sites, but here’s an example:-
https://www.morningadvertiser.co.uk/Article/2020/10/26/How-often-does-Test-and-Trace-use-pub-data

Re: Sessions in the U.K. 2021?

Fair comment.

Re: Sessions in the U.K. 2021?

We’re good, Jerry. If you do get to some sessions - although apparently not for the next 5 weeks or so - I wish you all the best. Take care, sir !

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Re: Sessions in the U.K. 2021?

>We were doing those with a group of six, socially distanced, well ventilated room (but unfortunately without flutes/whistles).

@Loughcurra, just curious to know who told ye not to have flutes/whistles at the indoor sessions? Is there some specific Public Health Advice about this? Probably most Public Health Doctors are not interested in ITM, apart from Breda Smyth. Is there any similar advice for outdoor sessions, if and when they are permitted? I am aware that the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra participated in tests which seem to indicate that players of most wind instruments only spread aerosols 0.9 to 1.5 m, so that maintaining the standard social distance of 2m should ensure a safe environment, Covid-wise. However, because flute players blow across the instrument rather than into it, the aerosols can travel 3m. I don’t think that anyone in the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra normally plays the Whistle (Tin or otherwise) so there appears to be no data available on the health & safety issues of this instrument. But when you look at how people hold the whistle, usually pointing down, one would think that the aerosol spread would not be that big? Anyone else have an opinion? I also wonder about singing, any data on that? I know in many regimes that choirs or community singing is banned, with Church Services being limited to 1 ‘cantor’ (or soloist) although I’ve seen 2 or 3 on occasion, soically distant from each other, and the rest of the Congregation. I also believe that there is a restriction on closing hyms, with only instrumental music allowed at the end.

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"There is no empirical evidence of any persuasiveness which claims to prove that these venues are prime locations for virus spread"

Spurious statement. There is plenty of evidence that it is transmitted through spit particles etc. in close quarters. You don’t need to say about every exact environment to put 2 and 2 together that pubs would be a hive for the transmission.

"I discovered the hard way 40 years ago that booze is never the answer"

Same here. It is hideously toxic stuff. Can’t understand how people can put that stuff in their bodies regularly.

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Hmm, CountryRoads, I am fully aware of the ‘aerosol’ transmission evidence, but nowhere in my post was I contemplating anyone meeting "at close quarters". Clear rules were imposed for the operation of pubs and bars, particularly in the July-October window (numbers, distancing, table service only, etc.,etc.). But Government did nothing to collect data from businesses operating under those rules, so as to assess and analyse the actual risk in those environments. It didn’t even systematically monitor the venues to see whether rules were in fact being adhered to. There is simply no empirical evidence, because none has been collected.

Instead, we have the original closures, and now further closures, based partly on limited studies from Europe and America, partly on anecdotal evidence, and partly on the type of reasoning which you yourself put forward.

I don’t think that these are sufficient grounds to impose a mandatory shutdown on an entire part of the service industry which would usually employ about 500,000 people in the U.K. and Ireland, that’s all.

Whether you would, or should, go to such a place during a pandemic, is a separate question altogether.

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I think many are going to go under aren’t they given the time they have been forced to be shut?

Not sure how things work but if the pub landlord (forgot their names) don’t own the properties then they would have still have had to pay rent wouldn’t they without turning a profit?

But even if they owned it they would still be left without their main source of income unless they quickly diversified to take out meals and such that was cleared by gov rules as they have been left out in the cold in terms of help financially as they fall under the larger entertainment industry which includes nightclubs who were just given the cold shoulder and told to retrain and ‘get over it’ as I understand it?

Pubs were already struggling for years I read with millenials not wanting to leave their little safe bubbles and just wanting to stay indoors on social media and watching netflix.

I think a large swathe of the pubs might have gone bust by the time they would be allowed to open anyway? As these weren’t the trendy spots as it was eh? Usually it is ‘old man’ pubs which just have a few people dribbling in day by day. So from a business aspect I doubt they were thriving before hand so it could be the coup de grace for many.

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I play whistle and flute and have started learning a different (non wind based) instrument this year purely due to the above (which is proving very slow but fun!)

I’m also not sure the science proves whistles are higher risk (although blowing them clear every couple of tunes will have to stop!), but I can see sessions and pubs, regardless of the specific risk, mandating face masks for performers (for perceived liability and concerns of other pub users) and don’t want to risk not being able to play in them purely because I’m the only one who can’t wear a mask due to my instrument.

Re. The comment: “Pubs were already struggling for years I read with millenials not wanting to leave their little safe bubbles and just wanting to stay indoors on social media and watching netflix.”

I don’t think this is entirely fair.
Cultures change and alcohol consumption amongst younger people has been going down for ages (for the cost as much as health, it’s not affordable for students to “buy a round” as it was in my day), yet most pubs haven’t adapted to this and hence younger people don’t go, whereas cafes have thrived.

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I’m just wondering what will happen to all the online sessions that have sprung up since we were not allowed to go and play in pubs. Despite their limitations of not being all together or being able to play together simultaneously, they have become very popular with some people tho there are still others that decry them, or just can’t be bothered with them. They do have a certain appeal to people with mobility, transport, visual or hearing issues or even time constraints: not having to spend an hour or more each way getting there and back in fair weather or foul has its attractions. I don’t see all online sessions dying out as soon as it is safe or practical to get back to the pubs.

Re: Sessions in the U.K. 2021?

The online session I’ve been hosting every week since May I think will probably continue for some time into 2021. It will take probably a year or more before there is anything resembling "normalcy" again. Maybe once we’re all back in pubs playing the need for Zoom sessions die a natural death for the hard core players, but in its wake will be hundreds of close relationships formed from these events that would probably never had happened if it wasn’t for the pandemic. It will be so wonderful to meet some of these people in person when we can get together again.

The other very valuable thing that has come from the Zoom sessions is the ability for newer players to sit in with excellent musicians playing live and participate at whatever level they are able without worry of scorn or disrupting the session. I’ve had several players on my Zoom sessions since May who I’ve never heard play a tune, and that’s fine. That sort of thing I’ll miss if Zoom session go away, the safe intermingling of experienced and early players without the sort of drama and upset it can cause in a real life session.

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I’m not sure it’s practical, but, re the above, I might experiment bringing an iPad with speakers to occasional, specific physical sessions, when they start, and allow existing virtual attendees to be part of the circle (ie they play along on mute whilst others play physically and then lead a tune when it’s their turn with us playing along to the iPad).

It would be very very odd at first for the people physically there, but I have been worrying about excluding elderly people who may want to shield when physical sessions start and would be rubbish if they can’t be part of the group anymore so it seems worth trying…

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@belayatron: I think bringing an iPad to a session so those staying at home could participate on mute might be practical, and a grand gesture for those not ready to attend in person.

I’m not so sure speakers to let the group play along with someone on the iPad leading would work. You would need considerable volume and speaker "throw" to let the group hear clearly enough to follow along. Especially if there is typical pub background noise as well. A small session group with everyone using wired in-ear monitors could work, but that’s getting more complicated than most people can handle (or afford).

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@conical bore. Thanks you might be right… My thought re. Speakers is mainly, half the fun of our sessions tends to be the short snippets of chatting in between the sets and I’d like them to still be able to join in with this, with a secondary thought they could also lead bits. I’ll give it a go (if/when they start again) and let you know how it goes.

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Yes, let us know how it goes! We’re probably still a year away from everyone being able to fully attend sessions like we did in the Before Times. These experiments with remote participation will be vital for a while yet.

My fiddler S.O. for example, is trying to figure out whether to "attend" a workshop she’s done every year in person that will only be by Zoom this year. It’s a paid workshop, so there are some considerations about value of instruction in that format, vs. just staying in touch with friends she’s known for years among the instructors and participants.

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@belayatron there’s a group in Canberra (Au) that have returned to live sessions and have been including people on Zoom, it took a bit of tweaking but it’s certainly worth it.
You’re right Michael, friendships have been made that would never have happened without the Zoom etc sessions.

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Here in West Wales a scaled down, socially distanced, bring your own chair session, went ahead during dry weather at an outside venue, and will probably start again in the Spring. Roll on Spring!