Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update – 17 March 2020

A scientific image of the virus responsible for COVID-19.

The situation regarding coronavirus (COVID-19) both in the UK and internationally has developed since our last update. As of 16 March 2020, the UK government has announced new guidelines, including restrictions on overseas travel, advice against unnecessary social contact, and proposed that home working and social distancing be implemented. These measures are intended to slow the spread of the virus.

Activities on campus here at the University of Leeds are under constant review. The University’s priority remains the health and wellbeing of staff, students, and visitors, and as of yesterday (17 March 2020) all events on campus have been cancelled until 27 April 2020. As the IMC team makes preparations for working from home, this may lead to some delays in responding to enquiries.

We know that a great many people in the global medievalist community are understandably anxious about the current coronavirus outbreak, and the University of Leeds is taking measures to protect health and wellbeing, and to ensure that disruption to campus life is mitigated.

With regards to the IMC, we are awaiting further guidance nationally and locally as to if and when restrictions on large events may be enforced, how long they may last, and whether the Congress can go ahead as planned on 6-9 July 2020.

Unfortunately we cannot accept liability for any related expenses delegates may have incurred e.g. those relating to travel or accommodation not booked through the IMC. We therefore strongly advise you not to make any additional bookings, unless you have certainty that these can be refunded in full from the provider or via your travel insurance.

We appreciate the ongoing uncertainty may cause substantial anxiety for delegates and would like to take this opportunity to reassure you all that we are working hard to ascertain as and when either a government or University decision will be made, and what the financial implications of any possible cancellation may be. We will be contacting all registered delegates as soon as we have more information.

We appreciate your ongoing patience as this situation develops.

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