THE emergence of the new Omicron variant in Britain is what organisers of SKATE in Bournemouth’s Lower Gardens ‘feared the most’.

As additional Covid measures come into force across the UK, masks and face coverings are now mandatory in shops and on public transport from today, Tuesday, November 30. 

Yesterday, it was also announced that all people aged 18 and over are to be offered a Covid-19 booster vaccine as part of efforts to tackle the spread of the new variant.

Millions more people in the UK will become eligible for a third booster dose after early evidence suggested that higher antibody levels may offer better protection.

Simon Smith from That Group, organisers of SKATE in Lower Gardens said:

“The news of a new variant was always what we, as event organisers, feared the most when we decided to risk staging an event this Christmas. 

“We will of course be following the government guidelines as and when they come. Right now, as a hospitality event there aren’t any required changes. 

“We always have recommended masks in our skate hire area and we definitely saw an uptake in people wearing masks this weekend which we fully support. 

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“We already dropped our ice rink capacity this year in lieu of Covid and from today onwards will drop it slightly again just to help a little bit with the queues. 

“Other than that we await further government advice.”