Our COVID Commitment

Additional Space and Safety Measures in Response to COVID-19

Last updated on 7th July 2021. Please note these measures are subject to change in accordance with Government guidelines so please check back regularly.

Government guidelines covering the period of the show will be confirmed on 12th July, after which we will update this page with any specific entry requirements and details of what you may be required to do in advance of your visit.

Keeping You Safe:

We want to continue to ensure that you to have a great day out at The Festival of Quilts and enjoy your visit confident in the knowledge that we have the safety of our visitors, exhibitors and staff as our highest priority.

We plan to operate under the industry’s All Secure Standard – a comprehensive set of guidelines to ensure that our events are operating under COVID secure measures. 

It is likely that most COVID measures will no longer be legal requirements beyond the 19th July, however, to maximise the safety of everyone in the show the following precautions have been taken to give you peace of mind and ensure The Festival of Quilts is as safe as possible. . The lead booker will be notified via email (used at point of purchase) in advance of attendance to inform you of the procedures in place.

Precautions include:

  • Larger show footprint, as we will be using four halls of the NEC (rather than the usual three), which allows us to spread out and ensure significantly more space to social distance.
  • Limiting the overall number of visitors in attendance. We expect no more than 16,000 people in total over the four days (compared to 26,000 normally)
  • Staggered entry times which visitors will select when booking tickets and queue management ( to avoid congestion on entry. Once inside the caps on numbers mean you can stay as long as you wish
  • Separate entry and exit points
  • Increased aisle widths to 4m (from 2m or 3m) to allow for social distancing
  • Extended opening times to 9.30am to 6.00pm daily (closing 5pm Sunday)
  • Quick & Easy Workshop rooms will be larger with limits on capacities and cleaning stations in each room
  • Academy workshops will have capped numbers (and some will be held in larger spaces), each with fully stocked cleaning stations for cleaning between sessions
  • Galleries have been increased in size to allow for a more spacious viewing experience
  • The Festival Theatre has also been increased in size with caps on numbers and spaced seating
  • Frequent and thorough cleaning of public areas, toilets and touch points around the venue
  • Hand sanitiser and/or hand washing facilities will be provided throughout the venue
  • Tannoy announcements and written reminders to follow guidelines
  • Bigger VIP lounge with lower caps on numbers
  • Additional toilets will be available to minimise queues
  • Exhibiting companies have been asked to undertake an Enhanced Risk Assessment to ensure they are COVID-19 secure in line with government guidance
  • NHS Standard Ventilation, the NEC Building Management Systems monitor air quality and following review they have recommissioned their ventilation plant. This includes maximising fresh air rates and where appropriate, upgrading their filters to NHS hospital standards.

Face Masks

While face masks will no longer be mandatory, we encourage visitors, exhibitors and staff to take personal responsibility and to wear a face covering in any situation which is crowded or while in close proximity to other people. We do however recognise that there are circumstances preventing people from wearing a face covering and, being mindful and respectful of this, staff will not challenge or ask for evidence from visitors who advise that they cannot wear a face covering or who make the personal choice not to.  We hope that all will be equally respectful.

How you can help

  • It’s vital that we all follow the guidance outlined in order to protect ourselves and those around us. We ask you to therefore follow the government advice in relation to symptoms and isolation and do not come to an event if you feel at all unwell. Do not leave home if you or someone you live with has any of the following symptoms:

    – a high temperature
    – a new, continuous cough
    – a loss of, or change to, your sense of smell or taste

  • Anyone in a high-risk category should refer to the Government guidance before deciding to travel

  • If you are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, we will respectfully ask you to leave

  • Wherever possible, ensure you follow public health guidelines whilst in public

  • Maintain an appropriate distance from fellow visitors, exhibitors and staff wherever possible

  • Use hand-sanitiser and/or wash hands regularly throughout your visit

To ensure guidelines are followed, there may be increased waiting times and queuing throughout various aspects of your visit. We ask you to be as patient as possible

Further Information and Advice

You can order lateral flow tests in advance here.

If you develop symptoms of COVID-19 please leave immediately and try to inform The Festival of Quilts organisers at covidqueries@immediate.co.uk

Following your visit, should you develop any COVID-19 symptoms or test positive for COVID-19, please inform covidqueries@immediate.co.uk.

For more information, please find some useful links below:

·       Click here for the NHS symptom checker

·       Click here for the Government COVID-19 guidelines

·       Click here to order a lateral flow test kit 

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