Oscar winning actress, Dame Helen Mirren warns the pandemic could leave many theatre industry workers unable to pay their rent and says she believes that many people will be struggling over the next two years as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.
Back in July the government announced a £1.57 billion funding package for the arts, with many theatres receiving financial support and some venues have also been able to make use of the furlough scheme for staff members, but the Society of London Theatre and UK Theatre has also warned that many freelancers have been excluded from support schemes.
The actress highlighted all workers in the sector - including ushers, costume designers to cleaners and stagehands, as well as actors.
"They all have bills to pay, they have rent to pay and they very often are not the kind of people who have been able to create a nice little security fund for themselves," she said. "The worry is simply people not being able to pay their rent," said Mirren.
She is, however, optimistic that theatre will "come back", but says the arts are "really suffering" and that those who work in the industry need support.
ExcludedUK is a non profit grassroots NGO founded to provide a platform for those denied fair and adequate financial support from the Governments COVID-19 Support schemes since the pandemic began in March. With a community of over 60,000 members across all industries, age groups and regions, we estimate that three million UK tax payers have been excluded from the same support as others, which has lead to thousands of people losing their livelihoods, careers, and homes, and sadly, for some, their lives.
ExcludedUK has been fundraising to provide urgent help and support for those affected in the forms of business and career advice, debt support and 121 counselling sessions within 48 hours. Please find more information on our website www.excludeduk.org.