The Royal Albert Hall informed patrons: ‘In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and following advice from government, we have taken the decision with a heavy heart to close the Royal Albert Hall from midday today, Tuesday 17 March, to the public until further notice.
‘The safety and security of our artists, audiences and staff is, ultimately, all that matters. ‘We’ve been here for the nation for almost 150 years in good times and bad. We exist to be open, to entertain, to inspire.
Our doors are made to be open to the world and so it goes against everything in our nature to close them. But these aren’t normal times and we find ourselves in the unique situation where closing our doors is the best way to look after the world.’ They also appealed to the public for donations as they rely on income related to events rather than government funding to exist.
They added: ‘We thank you so much for your continued support of the Hall during these uncertain times. Take care of yourselves, and we’ll see you again when this is over.’ Some of the events affected by the closure include the Teenage Cancer Trust’s upcoming shows, which were due to start next week. Kate Collins, Chief Executive of the Teenage Cancer Trust said: ‘Following the Royal Albert Hall’s decision to close, Teenage Cancer Trust’s upcoming week of fundraising shows, Teenage Cancer Trust at the Royal Albert Hall, are postponed. ‘We know this will be a huge disappointment to everyone involved in this year’s shows; the artists who were due to perform, their teams, everyone involved in planning the events and – most of all – everyone who had bought a ticket.