Plannning for Restart

Mask under armAs the current lockdown eases, we’re reviewing a draft document from the Federation looking at planning for restarting classes. Very little has changed in public health restrictions since the PM’s announcements last month, to the net effect:

  • no indoor classes beyond established Covid bubbles of 6 people or fewer, before May 18th
  • after May 18th:
    • classes of 6 or fewer adults indoors permitted with appropriate social distancing
    • classes of any number of adults outdoors permitted with appropriate social distancing

In the context of HEMA, ‘appropriate social distancing’ would appear to enable weapon-distance drills, exercises and free play, where weapon-distance includes longsword, rapier and messer, but excludes dagger, disarms and most pins, locks and grapples.

It is also based on the continued use of face coverings beneath standard fencing masks indoors, with isolation of individuals suspected of being symptomatic and those in contact prior to symptoms identified (as per track-and-trace).

Any developments in policy on vaccine passports is also likely to impact how and in what manner we are able to resume. It looks likely only a small ratio of participants will have one or both shots much before the phase 4 release of lockdown in June. Government thinking is especially woolly on this across the board.

We are also awaiting updated terms and conditions from the Fed’s insurers as to the scope of cover.

Scenarios currently in play at the moment include:

  • limited class sizes indoors in May
  • less limited class sizes outdoors in May (moving straight to Swords in the Park, if there are no restrictions on outdoor activities in public spaces)
  • no classes at all until June release of restrictions
  • all of the above
  • none of the above
  • something else, dependent on National and local restrictions, in response to the R-rate

To which we can only respond ‘stay safe’ and await further news. RC