G-A-Y Owner Brings Legal Challenge To UK Government’s Curfew
The owner of G-A-Y nightclub Jeremy Joseph released a press release on 5th October outlining his instigation of legal action in order to challenge the UK’s current Hospitality Curfew. Leading barristers at Kings Chambers have been assembled by Mr Joseph, and have been instructed to serve Pre-Action Protocol for Judicial Review.
The 10pm curfew has been in place across the UK for hospitality premises since 24th September and has been met with much criticism across the nation. Many have been outraged by the current situation as the hospitality and events industries have been some of the hardest hit and have been partial to conflicting messages in recent months.
UK venues have only reopened in the last three months, and the curfew has come following the end of a nationwide campaign entitled “eat out to help out”. The campaign, which offered discounted and supplemented meals to patrons in order to support the industry, has left many venues and organisations feeling confused and frustrated.
The curfew seems counterintuitive; after the government spent the summer encouraging the nation to socialise and boost the economy of the industry, (as well as implementing a return to work for those in hospitality) there has been a U turn out of nowhere that drastically impacts the viability of entertainment.
For the many venues that have still been unable to reopen yet, these restrictions are the latest knockback to the prospect of returning to business as usual. The UK Arts and entertainment industries are in the midst of countless ongoing campaigns, petitions and conversations with government about the future, which is dangling dangerously on the precipice.
The press release
In the official press release, which went live at 8.00am on Monday 5th October, G-A-Y CEO Jeremy Joseph said:
“The 10.00pm curfew which has now been in place for the last two weeks and has been detrimental to the hospitality sector, including G-A-Y, makes absolutely no sense. It does the opposite of protecting people by pushing them onto the street at the same time. They are going from being safe inside venues with staggered closing times to unsafe on overcrowded streets and overloaded public transport.
This Government has failed to show why the 10.00pm curfew was put in place and has published no scientific evidence to substantiate its implementation. It seems to direct the blame for this action on the sector, consistently treating the Nighttime Economy as a scapegoat when, in fact, we have years of operational experience of keeping customers safe, and have spent substantial time and effort making sure our venues are Covid secure. Enough is enough.
Matt Hancock and Boris Johnson have to be made accountable and today we have instructed our legal team with the support of the NTIA to serve the Government with a Pre-Action Protocol for Judicial Review to challenge the decision to implement the national curfew of 10.00pm on the hospitality sector.”
The press release included contributions from the legal team, and professional associates of Joseph. The Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) CEO Michael Kill also made a statement in the announcement, stating:
“The implementation of the 10.00pm curfew and further restrictions on the sector has had a catastrophic impact on business levels, resulting in thousands of businesses making the difficult decision to close the doors, or make staff redundant.
The decision to implement a curfew makes no sense and has no published scientific or medical foundation to reducing transmission rates. If anything, it is counterproductive, with thousands leaving hospitality venues at 10.00pm, creating mass gatherings on the street and overcrowding public transport.
Jeremy and his team at G-A-Y have been long-standing members of the NTIA, and we are fully supportive of the action he has taken to start Pre-Action Protocol to Judicially Review the decision by Government to implement the national curfew of 10.00pm on all hospitality sector businesses.”
— Jeremy Joseph G-A-Y (@JeremyJoseph) October 5, 2020