How Manchester’s well-connected events community has united to assist frontline workers

Event professionals have united to pool resources and work together to assist with requests from the NHS and other essential workers

Covid-19 has had a devastating impact on the events industry and it’s suppliers in the North-West.

Many companies have had to cancel or at least postpone their events as the industry has come to a halt, leaving thousands of suppliers, service providers and freelancers out of work.

In an effort to adapt and put their scuppered plans to good use, a network of North West event organisers and suppliers – including city centre management company CityCo who support Manchester’s major civic events and festivals – have created a group in which to pool their resources and work together.

The ignition of the new group follows a successful #LightItBlueMCR activation led by CityCo, which saw venues across the city of Manchester light up bright blue in the sprawling night sky.

Manchester Central

Aptly named ‘Events 4 Covid-19’, the new group aims to assist with requests from the NHS, local government, charities and any other organisations that need support right now to help with any efforts to support the community in the fight against the virus.

Events 4 Covid-19 was initiated earlier this month by events and communications personalities, Nelson Beaumont-Laurencia of CityCo and Robert Masterson of Mustard Media, after being inspired by Portuguese industry professionals who they have now established an alliance with.

Nelson Beaumont-Laurencia of CityCo assisting NHS Stockport

Since launching on 3 April 2020, the group has begun or completed work on 20+ projects to support commendable operations from a grassroots level – to the NHS and Greater Manchester Combined Authority – with over 70 companies signing up to the initiative.

The collaborative events group includes suppliers that have access to generators, furniture, comms equipment, tents and marquees, outdoor and indoor audio equipment, outdoor and indoor lighting, vehicles, staging equipment, medical and ambulances, heating equipment, venue dressing and many other items.

Events 4 Covid-19 can also provide services including security, medical, av engineers, traffic management, project management, networks of freelancers, transportation and volunteer management as well as many other services.

Examples of completed requests by Events 4 Covid-19:

19 beds, 27x pillows, duvets and linen were donated and delivered to a women-only refuge project by the Greater Manchester Combined Authority. The beds were donated by Bunkabin and the bedding from IQ Student Accommodation and transport by ExcluSec Group.

Five large commercial chest freezers and 60 trays were sourced and delivered for the Food Emergency Response initiative, organised by Mary-Ellen McTague and other chefs across Manchester. The chefs are preparing and delivering food to NHS workers and vulnerable people across the city. One of the freezers is now also being shared with food and shelter charity, Reach Out to The Community. The freezers were provided by the Green Events Company and supported by Isabel Mourato, Fairshare and Mersey Medical Services Ltd.

A huge team effort helped Events 4 Covid 19 deliver a number of key video messages for the Manchester City Council and GM Police’s joint #StayathomeGM campaign across Easter weekend. Local comms businesses sourced videos from influencers such as Peter Hook, Graeme Park, Rick Astley, Divina Da Campo and David Tag (Hollyoaks), whilst also working with local music heroes Rich Reason and Sophie Bee who asked 250 local Djs and other micro-influencers to post stay at home messages

The Night Time Economy Adviser for Greater Manchester, Sacha Lord, said: “I’m backing this new initiative which is a great example of the events industry coming together in a moment of crisis to assist the organisations most in need.”

Make a request for resources

The group would like to urge organisations working to fight the virus and its effects on the community to submit requests for resources large and small. Organisations can do so by submitting their requests on the form here.

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Offer your help by joining the network

The group includes: Aero Fire & Rescue, Beyond 90, Blitz Fireworks, Buddha Group , Cityco, Creative Chambers, Cynergy Security, DECORDIA, Dzine Furniture, Engine No.4, Entertee Hire Services, Events Design Company, Extinguisher Hire, F M Event Services, FGH Security, Falcon Power Generation, From the Fields , GoTo Live , Green Events Company , Illumin8 Lights, Impressed laundry, Indigo Technology Services, Inflatable Pub Company , John Mayoh Events, LFX Events, Louder louder , MD Professional Event Services , Manchester International Festival, Mersey Medical Ltd, Mustard Media and Marketing Limited, Niche Event Hire, Off to Work, Onasas, Osb-Events, Outgoing, P&H Medic, Pioneer Venue Solutions, Press Red Rentals, Project Power, Proud Events, RED DAM, Group CCTV, Red Rose Fire Solutions, Reflex Medical, Roadphone NRB, Stretch Tent Hire, The Events Structure, The ExcluSec Group, The Stage Bus, The Warehouse Project, Trinity Medical Services, Tube UK Limited, Visair, WRG Live.

The group also urges other event suppliers large or small in the North-West to join their efforts. If you’d like to join, please submit a request here.

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