THE RIVER FESTIVAL has been counted among the big-name event cancellations to hit Stratford.
Organiser Stratforward BID has announced the cancellation of the popular summer event set to take place in early July, as coronavirus continues to close in.
It follows the cancellation of other high-profile events including Shakespeare Birthday Celebrations and the Stratford Literary Festival, as well as the closure of the RSC venues and Shakespeare family homes.
The festival has been running for 12 years and last year attracted some 55,000 revellers.
BID director Joe Baconnet said: “Following emergency discussions, Stratforward BID Board agreed that the escalating situation with Covid 19 means it is prudent to make the decision now to minimise financial and public health risks.
“As a member funded business organisation we are acutely aware of the precarious situation the wider business community is now in. We are lobbying government and MPs directly and through various bodies to urgently alleviate the huge strains being felt by the whole business community.
“In Stratford, announcements of event cancellations and venue closures are coming thick and fast.
We are aware of a number of shops and hospitality businesses who are deciding to temporarily close and others that are considering this too as an option.
“These are not ordinary times. Keep in touch, stay safe, shop wisely and of course carry on washing your hands.”
Mr Baconnet has apologised and thanked those who support and take part in the festival and its organisation.