HarperCollins UK and Simon & Schuster have joined the rest of the Big Five publishers in announcing they are not attending the London Book Fair following the coronavirus outbreak.
Fair organisers insisted yesterday the event was still going ahead but their announcement was followed by a wave of cancellations from UK teams at Hachette, PRH, Pan Macmillan and Curtis Brown.
A spokesperson for HarperCollins confirmed this morning its UK and international teams would not attend the event, which is expected to take place from 10th to 12th March.
The spokesperson said: “We can confirm that, with the health and safety of our employees and others in mind and given the number of cancellations at the London Book Fair, HarperCollins will not have a presence at the fair this year and its UK teams will not be attending.”
Simon & Schuster UK also announced this morning it would not be going to the fair. A spokesperson said: "The health and safety of our employees is of utmost importance, so it is with regret that S&S UK have made the decision not to attend this year’s London Book Fair in light of the ongoing spread of the coronavirus.
"London Book Fair remains a crucial engine for our books and authors and we endeavour to ensure that those conversations still happen virtually in lieu of face to face meetings."
On Friday, a spokesman for S&S US confirmed that staff from all its imprints and divisions would be staying in the States.