Media release: 2020 Sydney Royal Easter Show Cancelled
Posted on : 13 March 2020
Due to increased public concern, to protect the health of stakeholders and visitors, and in response to the Prime Minister and COAG's direction that any organised mass gathering over 500 people should be cancelled, the 2020 Sydney Royal Easter Show is cancelled.
President of the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW Robert Ryan OAM said it was distressing and disappointing to cancel the Show for 2020.
"There are many people who will be very upset by this decision, and this is the first time the Sydney Royal Easter Show has been cancelled because of a public health emergency since the Spanish Flu pandemic in 1919," Mr Ryan said.
Chief Executive of the RAS Brock Gilmour said the cancellation of the Show was a huge disappointment for the Show community, particularly exhibitors and visitors from rural and regional NSW who love attending the Show to catch up with friends every year.
"The Sydney Royal Easter Show generates $250 million in economic activity each year and the decision to cancel will affect many stakeholders and businesses, including the RAS," Mr Gilmour said.
"As of today, we commence the task of communicating with all our stakeholders and helping them adjust to the reality that the Sydney Royal Easter Show 2020 will not go ahead.
"We are in the process of implementing a number of measures to deal with priority concerns including refunding or holding over competition fees, refunding tickets purchased by the general public and unwinding contracts with hundreds of suppliers.
"This process will take weeks and we will work hard to keep our stakeholders informed as we work through the detail.
"Cancelling the Show will cost the RAS tens of millions of dollars, and as a not-for-profit association, we will be working with the NSW Government to soften the financial hit to the RAS and to our stakeholders.
"The RAS survived the 1919 Spanish Flu pandemic, the Great Depression, World War Two, and we will survive coronavirus and the Show will be as big, bold and exciting as ever in 2021," Mr Gilmour said.