Ongoing information from BBL NI 24 Jul 20

Just a brief update to the ongoing information we have been releasing in regards brass bands in NI:

The NI Executive published new regulations on 23 July which contain an easing of the previous restrictions on “gatherings” (a gathering is defined in the regulations as “when two or more persons are present together in the same place in order to engage in any form of social interaction with each other, or to undertake any other activity with each other”

The full regulations are here:

Under these new regulations the limit on people participating in indoor or outdoor gatherings of more than 30 people is retained except where a gathering is organised or operated for a number of listed purposes, including cultural, entertainment and recreational. In such circumstances, the person organising or operating the gathering must:

  • Have carried out a risk assessment which meets the requirement of existing health and safety legislation;
  • Take all reasonable measures to limit the risk of transmission of the coronavirus, including implementing preventative and protective measures; and
  • Comply with any relevant guidance provided by a government department.

The regulations prohibit theatres, concert halls and conference facilities (including those in hotels) from re-opening.

The Executive of the BBL have been in direct contact with the Department of Communities and have been advised that guidance for performance is being prepared on their behalf by the Arts Council NI, and will be published in the very near future.

Clearly that guidance, once available, will be critical in determining whether this latest relaxation of the regulations will assist bands to resume activities such as full band indoor rehearsals and outdoor concerts etc. We would therefore advise bands to adopt a precautionary approach in the meantime. We will continue to engage with the relevant authorities next week and will advise all bands as soon as we have any outcomes to report. We are also in the process of reviewing the existing guidance we issued on 1st July with a view to issuing this in revised form.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

We have also been working on various other items that we hope to be able to share with you in the next week or two.  If you haven’t already, please get in touch and let us know the details for your band so they can go on the Band Map section of our website which you can find here:

If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to get in touch and we’ll do our best to assist. You can email us at