Events companies in Jersey are crying out over inconsistencies in the rules that apply to events and weddings in the island. Currently there is no limit on the number of people who can attend a marquee event in a public place, but private marquees are limited to 20 people.
As it currently stands, you could have a wedding in a heritage site like Samares Manor in a marquee and have an unlimited amount of people present. However, if you were having a wedding in somewhere like Domaine Du Vaux then you are limited to 20 people maximum. It's just a different piece of grass, and we don't understand the logic or the reasoning behind it.
It is an issue that is affecting those across the industry, who are already feeling the pinch from the past year.
I have two weddings in the middle of May - one of them is at Gorey Castle on the green, which is perfectly fine as they can have unlimited numbers. In a marquee, which is exactly the same marquee that's going to the other house a few days later, because it's a private house they can only have 20 people. It just doesn't make sense.
In response, the government says the situation will be re-assessed on 10 May, but those affected say that is too late - and will see people choosing to cancel for the second summer in a row.
It is known that parties or gatherings in people’s homes bring particular risks because the environment is not generally subject to the same cleaning regimes as commercial venues. Whilst marquees are erected in gardens, as opposed to in homes, it is the case that there is a tendency for guests to drift into the home, for example when using the toilet.
Furthermore, whilst a couple may engage a catering company to cater for a party or wedding reception in their private garden, the catering company is not responsible in law for ensuring that reasonable steps are taken to ensure compliance with COVID related public health controls.