Bectu responds to ENO relocation announcement 

6 December 2023

Head of Bectu Philippa Childs said:

“Bectu members and all those employed at the ENO have faced an incredibly challenging and anxious time in the wake of brutal funding cuts, unconfirmed relocation plans and continued uncertainty. We note the announcement regarding the ENO’s move to Greater Manchester, however we are concerned about the lack of detail regarding our members’ jobs and the impact of the move on ENO staff.

“We are working to better understand the impact of the relocation on our members and we will continue to engage with the ENO over the move. We also continue to engage with the ENO regarding the drastic reduction in hours and wages recently proposed for London-based staff.

“Underpinning all this is a very clear and urgent need for a proper strategy that protects both the ENO’s ability to provide affordable, accessible opera to new audiences in London and beyond, and the highly skilled workforce who make this possible.  If the UK is to continue to be a leading cultural centre, we must safeguard nationally significant institutions and the highly skilled jobs associated with them.

“Earlier this year, alongside our Federation of Entertainment Union colleagues, we called on ACE to produce a realistic strategy for the ENO. We now echo that call, and ask ACE and the government to work with ourselves, the other unions and the ENO on a thorough and realistic plan for the company, that sets it up for future success and protects the livelihood of its staff and freelancers.”