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More than 23,000 people have signed a petition to extend the furlough scheme for the theatre and live music industries.

The petition, which can be viewed at this link, asks the government to “save the technical crews before it’s too late”.

You can view the petition here. If it reaches 100,000 signatures, it will be considered for debate in Parliament.

The current furlough scheme is set to end on 31 October. Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has today (15 September) urged the government to replace the scheme with targeted support for badly-hit sectors.

The petition description reads: “Without theatres and live music venues where will your culture grow? We need theatre, from Shakespeare to Jack and the Beanstalk. Live music venues start people’s careers and I argue that rap to opera are as important to our culture as football and pubs.”

The petition has been endorsed by the Association of Independent Festivals: