Oxford City Council has announced this morning that this year’s May Morning Event has been cancelled.
The Council said that: ‘While we do not know what the situation will be in May, the emergency services who normally support the event need to be available for priority duties relating to coronavirus. The preparation times for the event mean decisions about the commitment of money and resources need to be made now. Given the uncertainty ahead, we have decided that it is prudent to cancel the event which will also mean the resources can be used elsewhere if needed.’
This follows Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s advice against mass gatherings, especially those that would require emergency workers to ensure public safety. He said in his March 16th press conference that ‘we’ve also got to ensure that we have the critical workers we need that might otherwise be deployed for those gatherings, to deal with those emergencies.’
Last year, over 13,000 people attended Oxford’s historic May Morning event, which usually involves a 6am start, with citizens and students congregating to hear Magdalen College choir sing.