Large numbers of fashion week and trade show organizers may be canceling events due to happen over the next few weeks, but on Tuesday, the organizer of London Bridal Fashion Week said it will go ahead as planned this month.
“As responsible event organizers and in line with our company values, the health and safety of all those who attend our events is our primary concern and priority,” said organizer Ocean Media.
“We appreciate that people may be concerned given the high level of media coverage the coronavirus is receiving, however, the risk to individuals in the UK remains low and there are no restrictions on travel or trade. As the first major show in the European calendar, and given the uncertainty in the rest of the market, we feel it’s important to give retailers the opportunity to conduct their buying at a time when the risk is low and contained in the UK.”
The UK has so far seen little more than 50 cases of coronavirus and while there’s a certain amount of nervousness among businesses, the authorities and consumers, life, in general, is largely carrying on as usual.
The organizer said that registrations for the event, which takes place at Excel in London from March 22-24, are following normal patterns, and are actually up 12% so far, with buyers registering every day.
Nicola Garton, Chair of the Retail Bridalwear Association (RBA), said the body “will be supporting LBFW in a few weeks’ time, and encouraging all retailers to attend as planned. It’s an important buying event for the industry and we shouldn’t allow speculation and hype to deter from what will be a great opportunity to see the fabulous new collections from our suppliers.”
William Dicks, Chair of the British bridal suppliers association (BBSA), added that it’s “imperative that our industry has a strong and successful trade show to kick off the new selling season. The BBSA and its members are fully committed to attending LBFW and making it a successful show. With far greater uncertainty on the continent, London will be one of the most important buying events of the season.”