Cultural events

Majority of Britons unwilling to attend large cultural events, new polling finds

Image: © Ipsos MORI

New polling of the British public conducted by Ipsos MORI has found that 67% say they feel uncomfortable about the prospect of attending large public gatherings such as sporting or cultural events.

Of the two thirds of respondents who responded negatively regarding visits to large events, 41% said they would not feel at all comfortable. Just 17% stated they would feel comfortable attending cultural events at this time.

In a potential blow for any museums or heritage attractions plotting a path to reopening, “these numbers suggest that it will take some time for parts of the British economy to return to any semblance of normality, even after lockdown has ended”, according to Keiran Pedley, research director at Ipsos MORI.

© Ipsos MORI

The lack of public confidence in returning to ‘normality’ is seemingly reflected in the UK government’s response to reopening museums. Unlike many European nations to have announced provisional dates for enabling cultural attractions to welcome visitors once more, Great Britain and France remain far more cautious.

The latest data from Ipso MORI suggests only necessary activities are being undertaken by the majority of British people. 61% said, for example, they would feel uncomfortable using public transport or going to bars and restaurants, but more than half are happy to shop at supermarkets to get essential supplies.

While these figures only represent a sample size of 1,072 British adults aged 18 or over, any reluctance to go to museums post-lockdown could well be a big problem for those sites in dire need of visitor revenues to survive.