COVID-19 statement - BFI Southbank

BFI Southbank reopening

We’re looking forward to seeing you again at BFI Southbank.

Keeping you safe at BFI Southbank

We’re looking forward to welcoming you to BFI Southbank this autumn. Our bars, restaurants and Shop are now all fully open and seating is once again on an allocated basis with our screens at full capacity. This could mean you're seated next to someone at busy screenings and may prefer to choose a quieter time if you can. 

Our other safety measures remain in place:

  • BFI staff will continue to wear face masks and we expect you to do so too in the screens and around the building, unless you are exempt
  • Please continue to book your tickets in advance, although the Box Office counter will be open for walk-ups
  • Our enhanced cleaning programme remains in place and hand sanitiser will be available throughout the building
  • The air flow in the screens is fully fresh and not recycled
  • BFI Bar & Kitchen will be open for bookings and walk-ins, and BFI Riverfront remains open as usual
  • Only ticket holders (including BFI Reuben Library and Mediatheque) and customers of the Shop or BFI Bar & Kitchen will be able to enter the building
  • We strongly recommend that you continue to use the NHS Track and Trace app

Please continue to show consideration and kindness to others and be respectful of personal space and boundaries. Please leave space between you and others where possible.


Changes to September seat booking

All September screenings have unallocated seating and we will operate with reduced capacities and will continue to review this over the coming months.

Screenings will start at their advertised times and latecomers will not be admitted. Face masks are strongly recommended - please see your eticket for further entry information.

Will I have to check in to the venue?

We strongly recommend that you use the NHS Track and Trace app. Download the NHS Covid app.

Is the BFI shop open?

The BFI Shop will operate reduced opening hours for the short –term and will be open Friday to Sunday from Midday. Please see our shop page for further details. Our online Shop is open as usual. If you have any questions about your order, please contact BFI Player can also be enjoyed from your own home.

Is the BFI Reuben Library open?

The BFI Reuben Library is open Tuesday – Saturday 12:00-16:00 by appointment only:

  • Pre-booking is essential online, for timed entry.
  • It is strongly recommended that all material be requested in advance of your visit, including material that was previously open access – request online here.
  • Regular cleaning during the day of the spaces/equipment used, and deep cleaning overnight.
  • Limited scanning and computer access.
  • The Digital Library on Demand service is operational; researchers unable to visit the library can request digital copies of material via this online form for a small fee.

Is the BFI Mediatheque open?

The BFI Mediatheque is open Tuesday – Sunday 12:00-17:30 by appointment only

  • Pre-booking is essential online, for timed entry during one of two sessions. Session 1 will run 12:00 – 14:30, session 2 will run 15:00 – 17:30.
  • Reduced capacity will be in place, with a total capacity of 10 research spaces.
  • Regular cleaning during the day of the spaces/equipment used, including between the two timed sessions, and deep cleaning overnight.

What cleaning protocols are you using in the venue?

There is an enhanced cleaning regime in place that includes cleaning in-between screenings, in between sessions in the BFI Reuben Library and BFI Mediatheque, and multiple daily touch point cleaning. Hand sanitiser is widely available throughout the venue.

Can I turn up without buying a ticket in advance?

To help us reduce the need for queuing indoors we ask customers to buy tickets in advance where possible. However, our Box Office counter will be open 11:30 – 20:00 daily for walk ups and on the day tickets.

What support will there be for those with access requirements?

Accessible screenings, including those with subtitles and audio description, will be available. While we will be unable to provide some physical contact support methods previously offered, we are working on Covid-secure approaches to accessibility support for example, some front of house staff (including those checking e-tickets) being provided with visors to enable lip reading. We recommend that anyone who requires support should contact the box office's dedicated access line ahead of their visit, so that we can make additional safety arrangements and provisions (including accessible seating).