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Deacon Blue frontman slams lack of Covid guidance amid flood of axed shows

Ricky Ross has called out the lack of decision-making on the part of the Scottish Government. Picture: Kenny Smith/DCT Media.

Deacon Blue frontman Ricky Ross has hit out at the lack of government Covid guidance for entertainers and venues as Omicron cases continue to rise.

The Dundee-born singer put out a Tweet yesterday informing fans that the band’s final two shows, in Glasgow and Aberdeen this weekend, will be cancelled.

He wrote: “Folks: We’re disappointed authorities didn’t make any decision regarding live concerts in the wake of Omicron spread.

“However it’s clear to us @deaconblue should not be playing and people shouldn’t be asked to attend gigs just now. We’re postponing our last two shows.

“Sorry to bring you this news, but we had to make the right decision for the good of everyone. We think we have.”

The rockers’ announcement comes amid a flood of postponed and cancelled shows as the Omicron variant spreads through Scottish communities.

North Shields chart-topper Sam Fender postponed his Dundee show this week after someone in the touring company tested positive for Covid.

Sam Fender’s show at Fat Sam’s on Thursday December 16 was postponed. Picture: Shutterstock.

And in the last 24 hours, all Royal Scottish National Orchestra Christmas concerts have been cancelled.

The organisation said: “The safety of our audience, supporters, musicians and staff is of the utmost importance to the RSNO.

“Sadly, due to cases of Covid-19 among the musicians, it is with great regret that our Christmas Concert featuring The Snowman has been cancelled.”

The RSNO has asked people to consider donating the price of their already-purchased ticket, instead of accepting their refund, if it is within their means.

Meanwhile, many across Courier Country will be missing their annual Christmas panto for the second year in a row, as The Byre has been forced to cancel their remaining performances of Jack And The Beanstalk.

‘On brink of collapse’

Performers and venues are once again looking to the public to help support them as the Scottish Government’s “stay at home” guidance leaves the onus on individuals and businesses to decide between Covid safety and financial security.

Music Venue Trust chief executive Mark Davyd criticised “confusing government messaging” and said venues are “haemorrhaging money”.

The MVT warned grassroots venues are on the “brink of collapse”, a sentiment echoed by Perth’s Twa Tam’s as the bar reported dwindling numbers and rising uncertainty yesterday.

The advice to “stay at home” came from First Minister Nicola Sturgeon yesterday as she warned that Omicron was likely to be the dominant strain of Covid-19 in Scotland by this morning.

She will give another update to MSPs at Holyrood today at around 12.15pm.

She urged Scots to consider their actions and stay at home where they can.

“Please reduce your contact with people from households other than your own as much as you possibly can,” she said.

“For now, please stay at home much more than you normally would.

“Right now, the risk of getting Covid from interactions with others is high and rising.

“So ask yourself before doing anything you might have planned over the coming days – is it as safe as it needs to be, and is it vital enough to justify that risk.”

There is currently no updated Scottish Government guidance for venues.

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