Run by the charitable Bury Metropolitan Arts Association, The Met is an award-winning live music and arts venue in Bury, Greater Manchester.
Housed in a historic Grade II listed building, it has in recent years benefited from a £4.6 million refurbishment. It is also home to the popular Automatic restaurant and Edwin Street creative hub which incorporates a recording studio.
In addition the venue organises the annual Head for the Hills festival which welcomes some 12,000 music lovers to nearby Ramsbottom.
In March 2020, COVID-19 forced the closure of the venue as the UK went into lockdown. As restrictions began to ease, The Met introduced new safety measures as it piloted the return of audiences to one of the North West’s most enduring and popular live venues.
The Met enjoys an excellent reputation for its varied programme of live entertainment. This embraces highly acclaimed national and international acts, who perform at its historic Derby Hall and more intimate The Box.
In order to maintain that reputation, the venue needed to devise and implement COVID-19 safety protocols which would gain the public’s confidence and enable The Met to once again welcome live audiences.
As part of its preparations for safely re-opening its doors to the public, in August 2020, it hosted a pilot event. This was designed to test audience reaction to the venue’s COVID-19 protocols and the hosting of a live streamed concert.
Those protocols included a one-way system, managed toilet access, table service and track and trace data captured via the booking system. Avoira also stepped in with a solution designed to both help minimise risk and provide reassurance to public and staff.
We recommended installation of an AI-powered thermal imaging camera to automatically temperature scan visitors’ foreheads as they arrived.
Within one second this identifies anyone carrying a raised body temperature, providing visual and audio prompts via a desk-mounted monitor.
Incredibly accurate, the 6.2mm dual spectrum thermal and optical medium range bullet camera is among a range unique on the market in operating as standard to within +/- 0.3 degrees Celsius when calibrated with a Black Body unit. This meets international standards set for the use of screening thermographs when temperature testing for fever symptoms.
Temperature readings are taken from a specific area of the forehead to prevent detection from other heat sources – such as a hot beverage – and ensure face masks can still be worn.
The camera is supplied as a convenient, cost-effective bundle which also incorporates a 22” monitor, client software, network switches, junction box and five metre HDMI lead.
The Met’s bundle was professionally installed by an Avoira engineer, with installation including Black Body calibration to ensure high accuracy.
Our temperature detection solution provides The Met with a fast and accurate method of screening for raised body temperatures. It allows the venue to manage access of visitors who display one of the main symptoms of COVID-19.
Artistic director David Agnew welcomed our solution. “The thermal imaging camera is important not just because of what it does, but that it can be seen doing it. It gives visitors an early indication that we have absolutely everything in place, immediately reassuring them.
“Our staff were very confident using it and every visitor was smoothly and successfully temperature tested on entry. I, personally, was surprised at just how quickly the camera works.”