Pitch Use and COVID-19

David KitchinerFeatured, News

England Hockey have recently announced guidelines for STEP 2 of their plan for a gradual return to hockey – Getting Back on the Pitch.  The CHC Management Committee has reviewed these guidelines and devised our own plan for returning to the pitch.  This will be reviewed and updated as England Hockey guidance changes.

With effect from Monday, 15th June, the following plan will come into force:

  • PERMITTED USE
    • Hockey played by groups of up to six players from different households under social distancing guidelines
    • Coaching sessions involving two to six individuals, including the coach(es), involving coach(es) and player(s) from different households under social distancing guidelines.  Where this involves a young person (Under-18) their parent/guardian must be present and observing social distancing guidelines. 
    • Hockey played between a household group (where social distancing is not required).
    • All adults (18+) are responsible for ensuring that they observe social distancing guidelines while using the pitch or spectating.
    • Under-18s must be accompanied by a parent/guardian who does not have to be on the pitch but must remain within view of the pitch at all times.  The parent/guardian is responsible for ensuring that the young person observes social distancing guidelines both on and off the pitch.
  • THE FACILITIES
    • The pitch will be divided into two areas with dividing lines of cones 5m either side of the halfway line running the entire width of the pitch i.e. there will be a 10m “no man’s land” dividing the two playing areas to help maintain social distancing.
    • The section of the pitch nearest the car park will be PITCH A.
    • The section of the pitch furthest from the car park will be PITCH B.
    • Please do not attempt to enter/use the clubhouse or changing block.
    • Changing and toilet facilities will not be available.
  • BOOKING
    • The pitch will be available for use by club members for advance booking only.  It is vital that this is observed for insurance and security reasons.  We urge all club members to please respect this.
    • The individual who books the pitch is known as the Booker.
    • A maximum of two bookings per hour will be permitted, each taking place on separate areas of the pitch.
    • Pitch bookings may be made for 50 minutes’ duration and starting on the hour.
    • Keyholders may book a pitch slot on any day of the week from 10:00-21:00.  The last session must be off the pitch by 21:50.  The Booker is responsible for unlocking/locking the pitch.
    • Non-keyholders may book a pitch slot on Wednesday evenings from 19:00-21:00.  The pitch will be unlocked/locked by a volunteer keyholder.
      • NB We are seeking volunteer keyholders to unlock/lock the pitch for other daytime or evening sessions for non-key holders.  Please contact Kitch if you can help.
    • The Booker is responsible for ensuring that all members of his/her group are aware of these guidelines.
    • Bookings may be made on the spreadsheet below.  Simply enter the name of the Booker in the pitch slot required:
  • CHARGES
    • Until the end of June, 2020 there will be no charge for the use of the pitch by club members.
    • With effect from 1st July, 2020 charges will be levied as per our existing Pitch Usage Policy:
      • £4 for adults and £2 for juniors (each membership category as defined at the AGM).
      • The Booker will take personal responsibility for collecting the playing fees and accounting for them to the club treasurer. 
      • Collected fees should be paid directly into the club’s account: Chelmsford Hockey Club, Lloyds Bank, Sort code: 30-91-85, Account: 00997139 and with member’s name and date.
  • ARRIVAL/DEPARTURE
    • Please arrive and depart on time.  Do not arrive before your booked pitch time and do not loiter on the pitch or tarmac after your session.
    • Individuals/groups using PITCH A must enter/exit the playing surface via the double gates opposite the enclosure gates.
    • Individuals/groups using PITCH B must enter/exit the playing surface via the single gate near the halfway line. 
  • USAGE
    • Participants must remain within their area of the pitch at all times.
    • Participants must provide their own equipment, including balls.  Do not use club equipment stored in the kit store or equipment room.
    • Do not stray into the coned-off area in the centre of the pitch or move the cones.  If you notice that any cones have been moved please replace them, preferably using your stick to move them.
    • The Booker is responsible for providing first aid kit.  The club will not be making first aid kit available due to the risk of cross-contamination.
    • Coaches are strongly recommended to ensure they have individual insurance cover in place and should ensure they have a first aid kit.
  • GENERAL
    • Follow Public Health England advice for good hygiene at all times. 
    • Maintain 2m social distance (unless you are from the same household).
    • Use your own equipment (stick and balls) and avoid touching other equipment (goals etc). If you are doing passing exercises only touch the ball with your stick!
    • One-to-one and group coaching is permitted in line with England Hockey safeguarding guidance (included in here).
    • Groups should not mix but coaches can work across groups.
    • Do not participate if you are required to self-isolate 

Full Government Guidance

The following recommendations for Hockey in England have been built from the government advice as follows: 

Overarching Government Guidance for Participants: 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-phased-return-of-sport-and- recreation/guidance-for-the-public-on-the-phased-return-of-outdoor-sport-and-recreation

Coaches: 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-phased-return-of-sport-and- recreation/guidance-for-personal-trainers-and-coaches-on-the-phased-return-of-sport-and-recreation

Facility Providers: 

UK Government: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-phased- return-of-sport-and-recreation/guidance-for-providers-of-outdoor-facilities-on-the-phased-return-of-sport- and-recreation 

Additional advice from the FIH: http://fih.ch/news/covid-19-fih-issues-guidance-to-ensure-playing-fields-are- ready-when-restrictions-end/ 

Government Team Sports Guidance (NEW from 1 June) 

People who play team sports can now meet to train together and do things like conditioning or fitness sessions but they must be in wholly separate groups of no more than 6 and must remain 2 metres apart at all times. While groups could practice ball skills like passing and kicking, equipment sharing should be kept to a minimum and strong hand hygiene practices should be in place before and after. Physical contact with anyone outside of your household is not permitted, therefore playing of any games (small sided or full) is also not permitted at this time. 

Avoid meeting in groups of 6 in busy or overcrowded areas, if it is so busy that it is not possible to maintain social distancing at all times.