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In response to Sunday's Government announcement that unlimited outdoor activity will be permitted in England, the RYA has issued guidance for English Affiliated Clubs that are considering a safe plan to restart their boating activity.

The guidance has been created as part of the RYA's ongoing support for Affiliated Clubs during the Covid-19 pandemic. It includes advice on how clubs may be able to facilitate activity while minimising the risk of transmitting infection (including social distancing and adequate cleaning and hygiene) and how to reduce the likelihood of a call-out to emergency services through enhanced risk assessment, maintenance and safety.

Alistair Dickson, RYA Director of Sport Development explains: "Many clubs have been completely shut down during the pandemic with staff placed on furlough, so we are pleased to be able to offer this practical guidance to clubs to help them plan for the future.

"However due to the severity of the situation and in order to keep people safe, we are encouraging clubs to take their time and use this information to carefully plan and develop their own policies which will best suit their venues. This will likely involve creating a team who will be responsible for reviewing what's practically possible, deciding what's best for their club and implementing those decisions effectively with clear communication to their membership.

"We urge the members of English clubs to be patient during the next couple of weeks. It is unlikely many will be able to open straight away and it's in all of our interests that clubs open when they are ready to facilitate safe activity with appropriate social distancing measures, hygiene procedures and risk management practices."

The RYA is mindful that Home Country Governments have issued their own phased plans and measures. Therefore, we would encourage Scottish, Northern Irish and Welsh clubs to wait for further guidance from RYA Scotland, RYA Northern Ireland and RYA Cymru Wales.

Guidance for RYA Recognised Training Centres and Instructors will also be issued shortly.

The RYA Sport Development team are offering a series of online Club Development Forums as an opportunity for people in clubs to come together and share their thoughts on the challenges that lie ahead. Project #SailFromHome also shares interactive webinars and club development content every Thursday.

"Once again we thank all those who are involved in running clubs and centres for their efforts and patience during this challenging time and we will continue to work hard to ensure you get the information and advice needed as soon as possible," Alistair concludes.

Further Covid-19 advice for clubs, classes and training centres, as well as recreational boating in the UK and abroad, can be found on the RYA website.

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