TALKS on re-opening nightclubs and indoor live music venues in Wales will not take place until next month at the earliest, Mark Drakeford has said.

Indoor hospitality venues will be allowed to re-open from Monday, but uncertainty remains around other types of businesses.

Asked if a certain percentage of young people would need to receive a jab before clubs could open, first minister Mr Drakeford told the PA news agency: “As of yesterday, 56 per cent of people in their 30s had already received a first dose of a vaccine, and 37 per cent of people in their 20s had received a first dose.

“That number is going to keep on rising and rise pretty quickly over the weeks ahead. So every week that goes by does extend the protection that vaccination offers to younger people, and that does mean that the reopening of some of those live venues will get closer.

“But the virus thrives in indoor settings, it thrives when people are close together, it thrives when people spend time together, and it thrives in places where ventilation is not a particularly strong feature of the venue.

“That’s not far off describing a nightclub. So it’s just inevitable those venues will come towards the end of the reopening queue.

“We’re probably talking about the three-week cycle that will happen towards the end of June and into July before active consideration of those venues begins to happen.”

Mr Drakeford also said hospitality venues unable to use all their available space due to social distancing restrictions will be given financial assistance.

He told the PA news agency: “The first decision I took after the election was to release £66 million of the £200 million we’ve set aside to support businesses up to the end of June.


“It’s a two-pronged strategy, really. Supporting them while they are not able to open fully, hoping that if we keep the virus suppressed successfully, as we have at the moment, that we will be able to lift those restrictions further so they will be able to welcome more people back to those venues.

“But doing things in the way we are is for businesses advantage as well. I’ve had many hospitality businesses say to me that to give people confidence to come back and start booking tables or visiting pubs they will want to know that all reasonable precautions have been taken to keep them safe.”