COVID-19 Club Support
England Squash have now released their full guidance for clubs and venues for return to play on the 25th of July. You can download the full guidance for return to play below and the risk assessment template.
Please make sure your facility is ready for returning to playing squash and racketball by planning and implementing the following :-
1. Leadership and management
Establish whether staff can safely return to work under Government guidelines and if there is a minimum number of staff required to open and run the club. Is there someone in your team that can take the lead regarding COVID-19 and what support can they be given? At what point is it financially viable for the club to open, remembering there is very likely to be reduced income from bookings and secondary spend.
2. Club access and environment
All clubs are unique so consider what changes are required to minimise risk at your facility including safe entry and exit of the club, and also how you could stop or limit use of the communal spaces. It is likely that any café/bar, changing facilities and showers will be closed at first, so what implications will this have? For instance, it will be necessary to ensure the club has sufficient cleaning and hygiene products and a more frequent cleaning schedule.
3. Court bookings
Review the court booking system to ensure that you can trace, contact and record who has been into the club and when. Consider your booking policy, as advance bookings are the safest way to regulate the number of people attending the club. Review how long is required between court bookings to allow for cleaning all common surfaces.
We all have a part to play in returning to squash safely. Members will need to adopt new habits such as taking spare towels and arriving to play ready in their kit, bringing their own water and even a small first aid kit, which might be unusual for them. How will you best communicate these changes with your members and keep them and your staff safe?
This is an uncertain time for everyone. Squash clubs and leisure centres are no different. Some clubs will be concerned about their financial position given the current situation. There is still financial support out there. We have outlined some of these below with links to the relevant information. Further information can be found on englandsquash.com
Government Small Business Grant Fund
The Small Business Grant Fund (SBGF) is supported by the Government. All eligible businesses in England in receipt of either Small Business Rates Relief (SBRR) or Rural Rates Relief (RRR) in the business rates system will be eligible for a payment of £10,000.
Under the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant (RHLG) eligible businesses in England in receipt of the Expanded Retail Discount (which covers retail, hospitality and leisure) with a rateable value of less than £51,000 will be eligible for a cash grants of £10,000 or £25,000 per property.
Eligible businesses in these sectors with a property that has a rateable value of up to and including £15,000 will receive a grant of £10,000.
Eligible businesses in these sectors with a property that has a rateable value of over £15,000 and less than £51,000 will receive a grant of £25,000.
Businesses with a rateable value of £51,000 or over are not eligible for this scheme. Businesses which are not ratepayers in the business rates system are not included in this scheme.
Community Emergency Fund – This opportunity is currently closed. We will let you know when it becomes available again.
Sport England have launched a new £20 million COMMUNITY EMERGENCY FUND to support sports clubs that are financially affected by coronavirus.
Clubs can use this funding for things like rent, utility costs, insurances, facility or equipment hire and core staffing costs (including casual workers) that cannot be met elsewhere by other government funds.
England Squash Affiliation
England Squash appreciate that with no members on court, many clubs will be considering how to make ends meet. They are aware that affiliation to England Squash may be a factor here. As such, they have frozen all membership and affiliation renewals during the time that the current Government measures are in place (i.e. whilst leisure centres, gyms and sports clubs must be closed). The period for which England Squash will extend the following will be in line with the Government measures. This means:
Your club and its members will continue to be affiliated throughout this period. Clubs who have paid their affiliation renewal invoice since 1 March will receive discounted affiliation fees next year, pro-rata of the number of months that squash clubs must be closed.Clubs who are due to renew during the period of Government measures (or have lapsed since 1 March) will be given a ‘grace period’ so will remain affiliated. Renewal invoices will not be sent during this time. Once the current measures have been lifted, clubs will be invoiced for the number of months remaining in their affiliation year. For clubs that do not fall into these categories, we will offer a discount to their affiliation fees next year, pro-rata of the number of months that squash clubs must be closed.
If you receive an invoice from England Squash during this period, please ignore it for the time being. ES will be in touch with a revised invoice later in the year.