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Distribution list: Tuesday 15 September

Coronavirus (Covid-19) update
We have provided an update on the handling of positive Covid-19 cases by clubs and of current local lockdown restrictions.

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
Handling positive Covid-19 cases
We are currently liaising 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.

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 will be banned in England from Monday 14 September, 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.

We are working to see whether guidance on numbers permitted on training areas can be increased to reflect the age of participants. Until we have secured approval for this, clubs should 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
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. This currently includes the following areas:

Government guidance - Birmingham, Sandwell and Solihull
Government guidance - Blackburn with Darwen, Oldham and Pendle
Government guidance - Bolton
Government guidance - Leicester
Government guidance - North of England

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.

The following local restrictions may impact rugby clubs in Northampton:

As highlighted previously, an outbreak of Covid-19 has been identified at certain Greencore factories. Any club member who has undertaken work in affected areas listed in the guidance, and the people they live with (or have formed a support bubble with), should self-isolate at home for the recommended periods specified and should not visit a rugby club. Read the detailed Northampton Guidance issued on Monday 31 August.
Other important updates
Pitch Up for Rugby Weekend
Thank you to all the clubs up and down the country that got involved in the Pitch Up for Rugby Weekend. You can find out more in the links below about North Dorset RFC’s and Barnes RFC’s Pitch Up for Rugby weekends, as well as the fundraising activities that both clubs undertook during the lockdown.

There are also some great stories on our Twitter page#PitchUpforRugby
Barnes RFC
North Dorset RFC
Webinars and podcasts
Eddie Jones Coaching Podcasts
There are two Eddie Jones Coaching Podcasts this week, which you can listen to below.

The first is with World Cup winners Michael Lynagh and John Gallagher who joined England head coach Eddie Jones and RFU director of performance Conor O’Shea to reminisce about their early rugby experiences.

The second is with the Australia men’s cricket head coach Justin Langer, who is also Australia’s all-time leading first class runs scorer.
Early Experiences
Langer podcast
Preparing & planning your pitches for Spring 2021
Usage, budgeting & scope of works through Covid - 19

This webinar, from 7-8pm on Thursday 24 September, will talk through what the potential implications are for your pitch maintenance programme as we move through the Return to Community Rugby Roadmap. It will look at how you manage your pitches, how to develop a pitch usage policy and share examples from an RFU Pitch Advisor and other club grounds teams - you can register below.
Register Today
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
Celebrating UK Coaching Week | 14–20 September 2020
Eddie Jones thanks coaches for their contribution to rugby during UK Coaching Week, you can watch his message via the link below. Today we’ve highlighted the Head Coach of Witney Wolves, Kate Nicholls, who says the role is so rewarding that she can’t understand why more coaches don’t seek to run Special Educational Needs (SEN) teams. Read her story below.

Your coaching team may also be interested in registering for the UK Coaching Mental Health Workshop, which is free until Wednesday 30 September 2020, they can register here.
Eddie's Message
Nicholls' Story
Rugby community doing great things
This week England legend and World Rugby Chairman Sir Bill Beaumont commented on the importance of the community game and his involvement with Flyde RFC. You can read his story in the link below.

In addition to clubs helping their communities, we are now highlighting on englandrugby.com: Pitch Up for Rugby weekend activities, 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.
Recognition Programme
Bill and Flyde RFC