How is this ongoing crisis impacting on our Sailing Club?

Whenever I write something for the newsletter, it becomes out of date almost immediately – but my aim is to try and keep you informed.

Inevitably thoughts are turning to an easing of the lockdown and getting back to sailing. Planning is underway. We are, of course, in discussion with Bristol Water, who in principle are supportive of a return to safe, healthy outdoor activity provided certain criteria are met. John Smalley and I have another virtual meeting with them early next week. Although there is government review of current ‘lockdown’ on May 7th and the PM is due to speak to the nation on Sunday, clearly there won’t be a sudden lifting of restrictions or a return to normal.
Currently the club remains closed. Visiting the site is non-essential travel; please respect that and the reasons for it.

The sailing and general committees are looking at what ‘easing of lockdown’ might look like for Chew. Thank you to those members who have been in touch, your thoughts are appreciated.
There will have to be a phased approach, limited to start with. Sailing will not be the same as we had before. However we start it will inevitably have to change as we learn and government requirements change.
We are in the process of a review of club policies and procedures and creating a comprehensive risk assessment to look at reducing the risk of transmission of the virus. Sailing itself can be low risk; it’s everything else that we need to consider. For example: safety policy (which will have to change to ensure social distancing), emergency procedures, surfaces and equipment that multiple people could touch, areas of the club house to open/close and ensuring a secure long term supply of consumables such as hand sanitiser. In addition, there is an expectation to minimise even further the chance of needing to call the emergency services.

The RYA are due to publish a “return to boating strategy” in collaboration with the Sport and Recreation Alliance and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.” They are holding club development forums this week and next. We are getting on with our planning but there should be some helpful guidance to come.

Please be patient, it’s a learning curve for us all.
Most important, look after yourselves; keep well and stay safe.

With best wishesHelen Martin