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Distribution list: Tuesday 13 October

 
 
Coronavirus (Covid-19) update
Today there is a video message from Steve Grainger, Rugby Development Director at the RFU. In addition, we have provided an update on next steps for the Adult Male Future Competition Structure Review, the impact of the Covid-19 tier system being introduced by the Government and also on the wearing of gloves by age grade players.

Please visit our dedicated web portal on the England Rugby website to access coronavirus information and resources.

Past editions of these weekly updates can be found on this part of the website. Click here to find previous editions.
 
 
RFU Headlines
Return to community rugby update
Steve Grainger, Rugby Development Director at the RFU, provides an update on our continuing plans to get rugby returned. Please share this video with your rugby communities.

We remain at Stage D on the RoadmapRFU guidance as well as Government Coronavirus (Covid-19) Guidelines, must be followed. Where local lockdown restrictions are in place, local authority guidelines must be followed.
Steve Grainger
 
 
 
Return to community rugby – age grade regulations
Any mixed age non-contact activity under Regulation 15.6.2, must be risk assessed appropriately and follow best practice as outlined in the Codes of Practice, which includes ensuring parental consent is in place. Where 17 year olds are participating in contact training, Regulation 15.6.1 must be followed.
Regulation 15
 
 
 
Adult Male Future Competition Structure Review - Update
Once again, we would like to thank everyone who has contributed to the many webinars and surveys that have been conducted over the last 12 months regarding the future competition structure (English Club Championship Level 3 and below). Click below to read the plan.

A detailed summary of responses from the Future Competition Structure Survey conducted over the summer, separated by player and non-player feedback, can be accessed here. In addition, the results from the survey conducted in February 2020 are available here.

As Covid-19 restrictions are still with us, and we remain uncertain of the timing and nature of the 2020/21 season, the Community Game Board have taken the decision to pause implementation of any changes to league structures (should these be approved at a future date by RFU Council) to season 2022/23. Work on the review remains a priority and will be discussed again at the RFU Council meeting on 27 November, where it is likely a vote on some key matters of principle will be taken.

We will also contact Honorary Secretaries at adult male clubs (levels 3-12) in the near future to ask for their input into a survey which aims to help us better understand the level of interest from clubs to entering Lower XVs teams into the RFU Leagues Pyramid to up to Level 7. At the same time we will share some draft criteria for this happening. The outcome of the survey will assist the FCS Group in understanding the number of teams coming into the pyramid. Whilst there is no commitment from clubs at this stage, the information will provide an important steer in assessing the level of interest from clubs and any potential impact on future structures.

We thank you for your continued support in this important process. The majority of people agree that we have a significant opportunity for rugby to develop in order to provide an optimal playing offer and structure that protects the future health of the adult male game while meeting the needs of current and future players. Players are looking for a balance of quality of experience, welfare needs and less travel. Meanwhile, we must also ensure we protect the sustainability of clubs.
Read Plan
 
 
 
Revised local lockdown restrictions effective Wednesday 14 October
Due to the rise in the number of positive Covid-19 cases, as well as an increase in hospital admissions, the Government has announced its intention to introduce a new three tier system of local lockdown measures, effective Wednesday 14 October 2020. Clubs must follow the current guidance until then.

We are advised that unless local restrictions specifically mention restrictions on team sports and/or rugby, clubs should follow the NGB guidelines. In all cases, clubs must conduct a risk assessment and ensure compliance with Covid-19 secure guidance.

Clubs can check what local restrictions are in place in their area. The three tier system being introduced is:

Tier 1 - Medium:

Current nationwide rules will apply to areas in this tier. With regards to sporting activities in tier 1, exercise classes and organised sport can continue to take place outdoors, or indoors if the rule of six is followed.

Tier 2 – High:

With regards to sporting activities in tier 2, exercise classes and organised sport can continue to take place outdoors. These will only be permitted indoors if it is possible for people to avoid mixing with people they do not live with or share a support bubble with, or for youth or disability sport.

Areas in this tier include the following, and you can access links to the various guidelines.

Leicester
Greater Manchester
Lancashire
North East of England
West Midlands
West Yorkshire

New areas impacted by local restrictions and included in tier 2 are below, please note that at the time of releasing CGU only local authority guidelines had been produced:

Cheshire
Derbyshire
Nottinghamshire
South Yorkshire

Tier 3 – Very High:

With regards to sporting activities in tier 3, it is the same as for tier 2 areas, although additional measures agreed with local authorities could include closing of venues such as leisure centres and gyms whilst ensuring provision remains available for elite athletes, youth and disabled sport and physical activity.

Liverpool City will be the first area to be included in this tier and the impacted areas are Halton, Knowsley, Liverpool, Sefton, St Helens and Wirral.

Click here to access Government guidelines regarding what clubs can/cannot do in Liverpool City.

Clubs are reminded that the powers around local restrictions lie with their local authorities and to check the latest position regarding local restrictions as they may change frequently over the coming weeks.

Clubs may need to limit their activities in line with any local restrictions and all are advised to consult with the local authority in which their facilities are located should they be in any doubt. Information regarding any new local lockdown restrictions will be posted on the Government's website below.

We will provide an update to the game if there is any change in guidance to playing rugby union. You can read more information about what you need to know about the Government’s local Covid-19 alert levels below.
Rule Of Six
Covid-19 Alert Levels
 
 
 
Test & Trace and handling of Covid-19 positive tests
Clubs are reminded of the need to have a Test & Trace system in place. You can find out more about NHS Test & Trace below, or read about Howdens Test & Trace here.

In the event of positive tests occurring within a club, including retrospective cases, each case should be registered via the Positive Test Notification Form, which can be accessed on the link below. This information is requested to allow us to monitor the number of confirmed positive Covid-19 tests occurring in clubs and ensure clubs have the appropriate support.
NHS Test & Trace
Notification Form
 
 
 
Webinars and podcasts
Understanding Corporation Tax for Rugby Clubs
This webinar, at 7pm on Thursday 15 October, will explore how corporation tax applies to rugby clubs. Including what income is taxable, what reliefs are available and how clubs can comply.
Register
 
 
 
Webinar On Demand: Good Club Governance
Our Club Support legal series continued with Irwin Mitchell, covering good club governance. Discussing what good governance looks like and top tips for your club. Click below to watch the webinar.
Governance Webinar
 
 
 
Rugby community doing great things
Today we’ve highlighted the great efforts that are taking place at Lewes RFC to ensure their rugby club and activities are Covid- secure.

In addition to clubs helping their communities, we are now highlighting on englandrugby.com clubs’ self-help initiatives, as well as activities to improve diversity and inclusion at clubs.
Lewes RFC

As from 1-11-2020 Hampshire will no longer be in Area 2 within the RFU Sructure, we will then reside in Area B.

 

 

Area B will consist of  the following Constituent Bodies -

Essex, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Kent, Middlesex, Surrey and Sussex.

 

 

Please click here for the New RFU Structure as from 1-11-2020.

 

With the publication of the RFU Community Game update on 6-10-2020 we now know that Gavin Williams, Ivan Torpey, Sharon Evans and Merlin Gape O'Donnell have left or will be leaving the RFU.

 

The Rugby Community of Hampshire are greatly concerned at the loss of such committed individuals and their expertise, and would like to express our heartfelt thanks to them all

 

We have come to see them as friends and supporters of our efforts to progress the game in our county.

 

At this very challenging time we wish them all well for their futures and they know they will be welcome whenever they have a chance to visit any of our Hampshire clubs.

 

The remaining familiar figures have secured roles in the revised community game structure set out and we look forward to working with them either locally or nationally as appropriate.  Hampshire is included in Area B on the structure, along with 6 other Constituent Bodies - Essex, Hertfordshire, Kent, Middlesex, Surrey and Sussex.

 

The new structure starts on Nov 1st. This means that the new people working with us cannot help any of us till after that date. We can, however, congratulate Kieran Spencer on his role in our Area B as facilities executive.

 

Inevitably, decreased resources both human and financial are going to present us with a huge challenge in which the role of the local volunteer will be even more vital.

 

Hampshire RFU is ready to provide advice and support where possible and the increased use of technology, to which we have become accustomed during the pandemic, will enable a more frequent and dynamic dialogue to shape initiatives and cement support for all clubs in our rugby family.

 

 

 
Distribution list: Tuesday 29 September

Coronavirus (Covid-19) update
We have launched a short survey to enable clubs to provide us with input regarding the broader financial impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on grassroots rugby.

We also remember Matt Ratana who gave tremendous service to the Metropolitan Police and to the game of rugby.

Please visit our dedicated web portal on the England Rugby website to access coronavirus information and updates here.

Past editions of these weekly updates can be found on this part of the website. Click here if you need to find a previous edition.
RFU Headlines
Survey issued regarding the financial impact of Covid-19
We’ve put out a call to action to clubs asking for input from either Chairs or Treasurers into a short survey by Sunday 4 October regarding the broader financial impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

We appreciate the challenging times that clubs are operating under and the uncertainty that this brings. In considering how we may structure help and support, the survey findings will aid our understanding of the financial position facing clubs, given the huge pressure Covid-19 and the resulting restrictions is placing on the community game. The data will also inform us of the key financial challenges for clubs and enable us to provide an accurate picture during discussions with government over the impact of the pandemic on our grassroots game.

We ask a number of questions, including the financial implications to clubs if local sponsors and club supporters are not able to access international tickets this season due to matches being played behind closed doors/with significantly reduced capacities. This question will purely be analysed for the purposes of this survey and, to explain to government, the impact the return of fans to stadia has on our clubs more broadly. The information gathered via this survey will be used to paint a broader financial picture across the game, not to provide targeted support to clubs.

We continue work with government around bringing back a safe return to competitive match play.
Other important updates
Update on Covid-19 guidance and resources
We’ve recently received lots of updates and information regarding the impact of Covid-19 on our game. We have therefore taken the opportunity to clean up our website to ensure that all our Covid-19 guidance and resources are in one place. This is available through the link below.
Updated Resources
Update on the handling of Covid-19 positive tests
Following consultation with Public Health England, we have produced overview guidance which explains the actions required by a club following a positive Covid-19 test. There is also extended guidance available for clubs who have a confirmed Covid-19 test case.

We ask that clubs submit notification of all positives tests within a club, including retrospective cases. This information is requested to allow us to monitor the number of confirmed positive Covid-19 tests occurring in clubs and ensure clubs have the appropriate support. The notifications should be submitted via the Positive Test Notification Form link below.
Notification Form
Test & Trace
Clubs are reminded of the need to have a Test & Trace system in place.

The launch of the NHS/Government app now allows individuals to self-login at locations, however, clubs should consider the use of an additional system based specifically on the club, that allows them to track all visitors themselves. There are a number of systems now available and clubs should consider the benefits and which is the most appropriate system for them. One such system is been made available by Howdens, our insurance broker. They have partnered with Guest Visit to develop a bespoke system that allows clubs to easily record visitor information in a secure and securely managed way. You can find out more below.
Howdens Test and Trace
Local lockdown guidelines
Clubs are reminded that the powers around local restrictions lie with their local authorities.

We are advised that unless local restrictions specifically mention restrictions on team sports and/or rugby, clubs should follow the NGB guidelines. In all cases, clubs must conduct a risk assessment and ensure compliance with Covid-19 secure guidance.

Spectators, including parents, must abide by the Rule of Six, as defined by the government’s current advice on staying safe and social distancing, which you can read below.

This currently includes the following areas, however, clubs in each of the areas below need to be aware of the impact of any local restrictions applicable to their individual area. More information regarding the impact on each area is available in a detailed schedule via the link below.

Bolton
Leicester
Greater Manchester
North East of England
North West of England
West Midlands
West Yorkshire

Clubs may need to limit their activities in line with any local restrictions and all are advised to consult with the local authority in which their facilities are located should they be in any doubt. Information regarding any new local lockdown restrictions will be posted on the government's website below.

We will provide an update to the game if there is any change in guidance to playing rugby union. You can read more information on the Government local lockdown updates.
Rule of Six
Local Restrictions
Community rugby - current status
With the exception of clubs impacted by local lockdown restrictions, we continue at Stage D on the Return to Community Rugby Roadmap, which you can see below. RFU guidance as well as Government Coronavirus (Covid-19) Guidelines must be followed.
Roadmap
Webinars and podcasts
Good Club Governance Webinar | Thursday 1 October at 7pm
The next webinar in the Club Support legal series with Irwin Mitchell will cover good club governance. During this event we will discuss what good governance looks like, as well as providing top tips for your club - you can register below.
Governance Webinar
On Demand Webinar: Preparing & planning your pitches for Spring 2021
Usage, budgeting & scope of works through Covid - 19

This webinar talks through what the potential implications are on your pitch maintenance programme as we move through the Return to Community Rugby Roadmap. It looks at how you manage your pitches, how to develop a pitch usage policy and shares examples from an RFU Pitch advisor and other club grounds teams.
Register Today
Other news
National Parent in Sports Week (5-11 October)
National Parents and Sports Week kicks off on Monday 5 October. This year’s theme is ‘Let’s talk about keeping children safe in sport’.

This year, the campaign is trying to reach as many parents as possible with information and advice, with the hope that it can open up a dialogue with coaches, clubs and children about how everyone can contribute to safeguarding in sport.

As part of the campaign, sports parents will be asked to make the Sports Parents Promise, which you can read about below. The Promise outlines what makes a great sports parent and will give parents an understanding of how their contribution to their child’s sport helps to make it a safer place.

There are some great materials available for clubs to use with their members provided by the Child Protection in Sport Unit of the NSPCC (CPSU). Find out more on through the link below.
Find Out More
Sports Parents Promise
Rugby community doing great things
Today we remember Matt Ratana who gave tremendous service to the Metropolitan Police and to the game of rugby, which he loved. Matt was remembered at his own club, East Grinstead, where he was Head Coach, and other rugby clubs across the country. You can read his story below.

We’ve also highlighted some of the great activities that have taken place to support local communities. This includes the members of Barnet Elizabethans RFC who organised a cycling event to raise funds for Noah's Ark Hospice and Parkinson UK, and the teams from Old Northamptonian RFC who have raised over £6,500 through a coast-to-coast bike ride. In addition, there is news about Crawley RFC’s comedy event and Sidmouth RFC’s return to rugby. As Yorkshire Rugby celebrate their 150th anniversary, we’ve also highlighted some of the coaches who recently took part in the Three Peak Challenge to support Bumble Bee Barbarians, England’s original mixed ability rugby club. Click on the clubs' names below to read more.

Barnet Elizabethans and Old Northamptonians
Crawley
Sidmouth
Yorkshire 150th anniversary
Yorkshire

In addition to clubs helping their communities, we are now highlighting on englandrugby.com: clubs’ self-help initiatives, as well as activities to improve diversity and inclusion at clubs. 

Mitsubishi Motors in the UK are proud supporters of the rugby volunteers across England who make up an integral part of the game. Help us recognise your work by sharing your club and individual stories and videos withThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Click below to find out more about the Mitsubishi Motors Volunteer Recognition Programme.
Matt Ratana
Recognition Programme
 
Distribution list: Tuesday 6 October

 
 
Coronavirus (Covid-19) update
We have provided an update on the organisation structure of the Rugby Development team and guidance in respect of running half term rugby activities during the pandemic.

Please visit our dedicated web portal on the England Rugby website to access coronavirus information and resources.

Past editions of these weekly updates can be found on this part of the website. Click here to find a previous edition.
 
 
RFU Headlines
Supporting the rugby community
We are pleased to provide an update regarding the Rugby Development team. As a result of financial impact of Covid-19 we've had to reshape this team to ensure we use the resource we have available as effective and efficiently as possible. Click the link below view the team’s organisation chart. We will provide more detailed information on what this means for community rugby next week.
Organisation Chart
 
 
 
Running half term rugby camps and activities
Clubs wishing to run half term camps (or similar events) may do so, providing all appropriate guidance, safeguarding and approval requirements of Regulation 15 are followed. The Age Grade Codes of Practice (section 6) provides information on standard good practice for running camps. Due to Covid-19, additional social distancing and hygiene measures must be in place and all activities must remain within the Stage D guidelines of the Return to Community Rugby Roadmap.

Please note, the specific Stage D guidance overrides that of the ‘usual operating practice’ in the Codes of Practice & Regulation 15, e.g. maximum playing/training time is limited to 75 minutes, as per Stage D guidelines.

Organisers of half term camps (or similar events) should complete a specific risk assessment to consider any potential risk mitigations and additional requirements for the event to run safely.

The following should be included in the event/camp planning:

• Permitted contact activity (as per Stage D guidelines) should be limited to a maximum of 15 minutes per day.
• All group* rugby activity (including 15 minutes permitted contact) should be limited to a maximum of 75 minutes per day. *Group activity includes groups of two or more players.
• Individual skills and non-rugby/multi-sport activity is permitted (in addition to rugby activity) providing it meets with government/sport specific guidance and is risk assessed.
• Social distancing between sessions, measures should be taken to minimise players congregating/standing together.
• Regular equipment cleaning and personal hygiene breaks.
• Use of the facilities, changing rooms, food arrangements etc.
• Safe travel guidance (e.g. no car sharing).
• Approval from the relevant body as per Regulation 15.9.
Codes Of Practice
Regulation 15
 
 
 
Other important updates
Test and trace and handling of Covid-19 positive tests
Clubs are reminded of the need to have a Test & Trace system in place. You can find out more about NHS Test & Trace below, or read about Howdens Test and Trace here.

In the event of positive tests occuring within a club, including retrospective cases, each case should be registered via the Positive Test Notification Form, which can be accessed on the link below. This information is requested to allow us to monitor the number of confirmed positive Covid-19 tests occurring in clubs and ensure clubs have the appropriate support.
NHS Test & Trace
Notification Form
 
 
 
All Schools Update
Last year we hit our target of 750 All Schools, along with 300 linked clubs supporting them. We are delighted to be able to continue to provide support to these clubs and schools during the current challenging climate to enable them to develop the pipeline of players into clubs, as well as ensuring the sustainability of rugby within these All Schools. We have also delivered a number of webinars for clubs and schools to detail this support.

Should CBs require further information about which clubs are linked to the All Schools and/or update on their attendance, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
 
 
 
Local lockdown guidelines
Clubs are reminded that the powers around local restrictions lie with their local authorities.

We are advised that unless local restrictions specifically mention restrictions on team sports and/or rugby, clubs should follow the NGB guidelines. In all cases, clubs must conduct a risk assessment and ensure compliance with Covid-19 secure guidance.

This currently includes the following areas, however, clubs in each of the areas below need to be aware of the impact of any local restrictions applicable to their individual area. More information regarding the impact on each area is available in a detailed schedule via the link below.

Leicester
Greater Manchester
Lancashire, Blackpool and Blackburn with Darwen
Merseyside, Halton and Warrington
North East of England
West Midlands
West Yorkshire

Clubs may need to limit their activities in line with any local restrictions and all are advised to consult with the local authority in which their facilities are located should they be in any doubt. Information regarding any new local lockdown restrictions will be posted on the government's website below.

We will provide an update to the game if there is any change in guidance to playing rugby union. You can read more information on the Government local lockdown updates.
Rule of Six
Local Restrictions
 
 
 
Community rugby - current status
With the exception of clubs impacted by local lockdown restrictions, we continue at Stage D on the Return to Community Rugby Roadmap, which you can see below. RFU guidance as well as Government Coronavirus (Covid-19) Guidelines must be followed.

We have today announced that the Allianz Premier 15s season is starting under the Government’s Elite Sport Return to Play Guidance. Law variations have been approved, however, it is important to note that these law adaptations are applicable to the women’s elite game only.

We continue to work with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport regarding a return to full contact community rugby.
Roadmap
Allianz Premier 15s
 
 
 
Webinars and podcasts
Understanding Corporation Tax for Rugby Clubs
This webinar, at 7pm on Thursday 15 October, will explore how corporation tax applies to rugby clubs. Including what income is taxable, what reliefs are available and how clubs can comply.
Register
 
 
 
Other news
World Mental Health Day – Saturday 10 October
The World Health Organisation recognises World Mental Health Day on Saturday 10 October every year.

It is estimated that one in four people suffer from mental health issues each year. However, this year the numbers are believed to have increased substantially due to Covid-19.

The links between good physical health and mental health are well recognised. Physical activity such as playing rugby following Stage D on the Return to Community Rugby Roadmap can be very beneficial for mental health and wellbeing, as well as bringing physical benefits.

When someone is experiencing a mental health problem, supportive and reliable information can change his or her life. Mind, one of the leading mental health charities in England and Wales, provides information and guidance for anyone involved in rugby who may be dealing with mental health problems and those supporting them.

Guidance for clubs and the rugby community on how they can support anyone suffering from mental health issues, and/or information for those who may be suffering themselves, is available on the Simplyhealth Rugby Safe webpages below or on the World Metal Health Day campaign page, which you can also find below.
SimplyHealth Page
World Mental Health Day
 
 
 
Rugby community doing great things
Today we’ve highlighted the fundraising efforts that are taking place at Chipping Sodbury RFC to support a former player who was injured in an accident, as well as the activities that took place last weekend to support the virtual London Marathon and the Injured Players Foundation.

In addition to clubs helping their communities, we are now highlighting on englandrugby.com clubs’ self-help initiatives, as well as activities to improve diversity and inclusion at clubs.

Mitsubishi Motors in the UK are proud supporters of the rugby volunteers across England who make up an integral part of the game. Help us recognise your work by sharing your club and individual stories and videos with This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Click below to find out more about the Mitsubishi Motors Volunteer Recognition Programme.
Chipping Sodbury RFC
Recognition Programme
 
Distribution list: Thursday 24 September

Coronavirus (Covid-19) update
This week’s edition of the Covid-19 Community Game Update has been delayed from Tuesday to provide up to date information on the revised coronavirus guidelines announced by the Government this week.

Most importantly, we have provided an update on the decision made today to delay the return to competitive play for the 2020/21 season until January 2021 at the earliest.

You may also want to read RFU CEO Bill Sweeney’s statement, issued on Tuesday, regarding the financial impact on the RFU and the wider game if matches at Twickenham Stadium are played behind closed doors. Read Bill Sweeney's statement

Please visit our dedicated web portal on the England Rugby website to access coronavirus information and updates here.

Past editions of these weekly updates can be found on this part of the website. Click here if you need to find a previous edition.
RFU Headlines
Return to competitive play in 2020/21 season delayed to January 2021 earliest
Under powers delegated by Council, the RFU Governance Committee today made a difficult decision that, with the exception of Premiership, Championship and Premier 15s rugby, no organised* RFU or non-RFU Leagues including merit tables, adult or age grade competitions will be played before January 2021 at the earliest.

With the increased uncertainly caused by Government’s additional restrictions to curb the increase in Covid-19 cases across the country, the decision has been made so that we can provide clubs with some certainty over the next few months. 

The rugby community can continue to organise non-contact fixtures with other clubs using Ready4Rugby and other touch rugby activity. Limited and restricted contact rugby training can also be continued. 

The RFU continues to be in active dialogue with government about moving to Stage E on the Roadmap should we reach this point at any time before Christmas, competitive friendly matches could commence. 

The Adult and Age Grade Competitions Groups will be making recommendations to Governance on what they can do to ensure that any competitions from January are meaningful, including whether to make changes to the structured season. 

Governance also agreed that any decision to suspend promotion and relegation for the 2020/21 season would be referred to Council once the nature of the competitions is known.

Further guidance will be provided in due course to support clubs, schools, colleges and universities in playing to the relevant stage of the appropriate Roadmap stage.

Jeff Blackett, RFU President, comments: “We are very keen to see competitive rugby being played again. However, given the introduction of further restrictions to curb the increase in Covid-19 cases, we will not be able to move to Stage F on the Roadmap until a later date. This announcement gives clubs clarity over the immediate term to help them with their planning. We will continue to liaise with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and Public Health England to accelerate a return to competitive play as soon as it is safe to do so.” 

Although social gatherings of more than six people were banned in England from Monday 14 September and a number of local lockdown restrictions put in place in some areas of the country, the Government has confirmed that organised sports and activities that have been through return to play protocols can continue. With the exception of clubs impacted by local lockdown restrictions, we continue at Stage D on the Roadmap.

Clubs in areas where additional local lockdown measures have been introduced may need to limit their activities in line with any local restrictions. All are advised to consult with their local authority should they be in any doubt. 

*Organised competition in this instance includes any competition organised by the RFU, its delegated competition organising committees, or any other league or cup organiser.
Return To Play
Other important updates
Update regarding revised Covid-19 guidelines
In addition to local lockdown measures already in place, the Government announced further restrictions this week aimed at curbing the rise in coronavirus cases in England. Once we have fully assessed their impact, we will provide more detailed guidance to support clubs.

In the meantime, we wanted to highlight the following important changes to these guidelines, which you can read via the link below:

From today, Thursday 24 September:

• With the exception of those clubs impacted by restrictions already in place in local lockdown areas, in licensed premises, food and drink must be ordered from, and served at, a table.
• Customers must eat and drink at a table in any premises selling food and drink to consume indoors, on site.
• The wearing of face masks is compulsory for bar staff and waiters. In addition, customers will need to wear a mask when inside a club, except when seated at a table to eat or drink.
• Clubs selling food or drink must be closed between 10pm and 5am each day until further notice. This will include takeaways but delivery services can continue after 10pm.
• Clubs will need to display the official NHS QR code posters so that customers can ‘check-in’ at different premises using the app rolled out nationally as an alternative to providing their contact details.

From Monday 28 September:

Businesses and organisations will face stricter rules to make their premises Covid-19 Secure:

• Clubs must not knowingly require or encourage someone who is being required to self-isolate to come to work.
• Clubs must remind people to wear face coverings where mandated. 
• A wider range of leisure and entertainment venues, services provided in community centres, and close contact services will be subject to the Covid-19 Secure requirements in law and fines of up to £10,000 for repeated breaches.
Updated Guidelines
Local Restrictions
Local lockdown guidelines
Clubs are reminded that the powers around local restrictions lie with their local authorities.

We are advised that unless local restrictions specifically mention restrictions on team sports and/or rugby, clubs should follow the NGB guidelines. In all cases, clubs must conduct a risk assessment and ensure compliance with Covid-19 secure guidance.

Spectators, including parents, must abide by the Rule of Six, as defined by the Government’s current advice on staying safe and social distancing, which you can read below.

This currently includes the following areas, however, clubs in each of the areas below need to be aware of the impact of any local restrictions applicable to their individual area. More information regarding the impact on each area is available in a detailed schedule via the link below.

Bolton
Leicester
Greater Manchester
Northampton
North East of England
North West of England
West Midlands
West Yorkshire

Clubs may need to limit their activities in line with any local restrictions and all are advised to consult with the local authority in which their facilities are located should they be in any doubt. Information regarding any new local lockdown restrictions will be posted on the Government website below.

We will provide an update to the game if there is any change in guidance to playing rugby union. You can read more information on the Government local lockdown updates.
Rule of Six
Local Restrictions
Handling positive Covid-19 cases
We continue to liaise with Public Health England (PHE) to seek additional clarity on the process and requirements for a club to follow in the event of a positive Covid-19 case within their club. 

Currently, in the case where a positive test is a player, providing all rugby activities that the player participated in were within RFU Return to Community Rugby and Stage D guidelines, then there is no requirement for other players to self-isolate.

For any non-playing positive cases, e.g. spectators, the general Government guidance must be followed – see link below.

Further information will be published in due course. In the meantime, following a positive test, a representative from the club should contact the local PHE centre to inform them of the development and seek further advice. Clubs should also ensure that they have an appropriate risk assessment in place and are operating within Government and RFU guidelines for all facility usage and rugby activity.
Test And Trace Guidance
Community rugby - current status
Although social gatherings of more than six people were banned in England from Monday 14 September and a number of local lockdown restrictions have been put in place in some areas of the country, the Government has confirmed that organised sports and activities that have been through return to play protocols can continue. With the exception of clubs impacted by local lockdown restrictions, we continue at Stage D on the Return to Community Rugby Roadmap. The rugby community can continue to organise non-contact fixtures with other clubs using Ready4Rugby, which you can read more about in the link below, and other touch rugby activity.

Limited and restricted contact rugby training can also be continued. Details of the permitted training activity are available in the return to contact training guidance link below.

Clubs should continue to follow current guidance of no more than 20 players per half pitch in training. 

RFU guidance as well as Government Coronavirus (Covid-19) Guidelines must be followed.
Contact Guidance
Ready4Rugby
Webinars and podcasts
Eddie Jones Coaching Podcast
This week Joe Roff, Rugby World Cup winner and ex-Australia back, is featured on the Eddie Jones Coaching Podcast, and you can listen below.
Listen Now
Good Club Governance Webinar | Thursday 1 October at 7pm
The next webinar in the Club Support legal series with Irwin Mitchell will cover good club governance. During this event we will discuss what good governance looks like, as well as providing top tips for your club - you can register below.
Governance Webinar
Catch up on previous webinars
For those who want to catch up on previous webinars, these are available on the England Rugby website. Please click on the links below:

Club Webinars
Referee Webinars
Coach Webinars
Other news
Covid-19 Business Interruption Insurance
A decision was handed down by the High Court last week in favour of policyholders in the FCA business interruption test case. The FCA brought the case on behalf of policy holders against 8 insurers to try to resolve the lack of clarity in business interruption claims due to Covid-19. The decision considers 21 different policy wordings and could help clubs making claims under business interruption insurance.

Following the recent judgement, clubs that have/had business interruption insurance and affected claims should have been contacted by their Insurance Broker / Insurer as to how they intend to respond to the judgment. If clubs have not heard then it would be worthwhile making contact. Please note that the test case was not intended to encompass all possible disputes, but to resolve some of the key contractual uncertainties and causation issues to provide clarity for policy holders and insurers.

There is a chance that the judgement will be appealed but this does not stop policy holders seeking to settle their claims with the insurer before the outcome of any appeal is known.

Please find a link below to a document that has been provided by Howdens that gives further detail and information regarding this judgement – however please note that clubs should make contact with their own insurer or insurance broker direct if they don't use Howdens.
Read Document
Rugby community doing great things
Today we highlight some of the activities that took place over the Pitch Up for Rugby Weekend when rugby returned to more than 300 clubs across the country.

In addition to clubs helping their communities, we are now highlighting on englandrugby.com: clubs’ self-help initiatives, as well as activities to improve diversity and inclusion at clubs. 

Mitsubishi Motors in the UK are proud supporters of the rugby volunteers across England who make up an integral part of the game. Help us recognise your work by sharing your club and individual stories and videos withThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Click below to find out more about the Mitsubishi Motors Volunteer Recognition Programme.
Pitch Up Weekend
Recognition Programme
Teamwork       Respect        Enjoyment
     
Discipline        Sportsmanship

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