Nicola Benedetti has vented her frustrations about the cancellation of music events as lockdown restrictions tighten across the country.

Nicola Benedetti was working in partnership with Battersea Arts Centre to put on a series of concerts in the run-up to Christmas, which organisers have now been forced to cancel following the announcement that London would be placed in Tier 3. 

Speaking "on behalf of the entire performing arts community", the Scots violin virtuoso expressed her "heartbreak" at events across the country not being able to go ahead due to the pandemic.

She said: "We are all totally devastated that we have had to cancel these concerts and it is beyond frustrating.

"Venues up and down the country have worked tirelessly to ensure that they are COVID-secure, following all government advice."

She added: "Rules require discipline from people to carry out those instructions and there is no more disciplined environment than a concert hall or theatre.

"They are there to experience music and art and would never jeopardise anybody’s health in that sort of controlled environment."

Benedetti has previously said that mismanagement and a lack of leadership is “costing people their livelihoods” in the music industry.

She has also expressed her belief that access to the arts is a "fundamental right" - especially useful in energising us as we face challenges such as those caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

After last week's Tier 3 announcement, the violinist spoke of her frustration as she vented that transmission risks are "far, far greater" in other scenarios which can continue under Tier 3 regulations, while the performing arts suffer.

"The risk to people’s health is far, far greater in so many other circumstances that are allowed to continue in Tier 3", she went on. 

"On behalf of the entire performing arts community, I would like to express my heartbreak at events now not being able to go ahead.

"These concerts were planned to provide much needed respite in the lead-up to Christmas and I am so sorry we are now unable to share these magical moments with you but look forward to welcoming everyone in Spring 2021."