THE founder of popular event Sandfest has claimed the events industry has been forgotten as the government help businesses out of lockdown.

Johnny Wheeler believes events have “fallen between systems” that have been put in place by the government.

Mr Wheeler said: “I think the government is edging its way towards trying to help everyone.

“At the moment we appear not to have been helped.

“The impact is quite significant, especially for smaller pop up events, they are most vulnerable.

“We have a good business model. We can survive and we will survive but it is difficult.

"I feel for other events that might have a more precarious business model.”

Speaking about Sandfest, Mr Wheeler said customers had the option of carrying their tickets over to next year or receiving a full refund.

He said he was grateful a lot of them had decided to carry their tickets over.

“In terms of financial support, loans are terribly helpful,” he continued.

“You are pushing the problem further down the tracks with loans. Grants would be more beneficial.

“We have lost significant sums of money but we have been lucky enough to be supported by BCP Council and the residents.

"Not financially but in terms of encouragement. 80 per cent of ticket holders wanted to carry their tickets over."

He added: “We can’t think of many other industries that have not been helped. We’re encouraged by the feedback however and do feel the love of the area.”

A spokesperson for the government department of media, culture and sport said: "This week the Events Industry Forum has published detailed guidance, developed with medical experts, setting out how outdoor events can return safely this summer, adhering to social distancing.

"We are also ploughing in £1.57 billion - the biggest ever one-off investment in UK culture - to help secure the future of the performing arts, culture and heritage sectors."