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Distribution: Friday 17 April 2020
Coronavirus (Covid-19) Update
Please find below the eighth edition of our Coronavirus (Covid-19) update.

We will continue to monitor the impact of government guidelines on our sport, especially when we can restart the game in the future.

Today we’ve provided an update on the webinar that took place on 16 April to inform clubs about the financial support packages available, plus the next steps to take if an England Rugby First Aid qualification is due to expire. In addition, we’ve included guidelines on running virtual AGMs and filing of annual accounts, plus shared links to stress awareness guidance from the NHS and some educational resources that may support younger club members when they return to virtual school lessons.

Please visit our dedicated web portal on the England Rugby website to access Coronavirus (Covid-19) information and updates here.

We’ve also captured past editions of these twice-weekly updates on this part of the website. Click here if you need to find a previous edition.

We will continue to provide regular updates through this communication to support the rugby community.
Rugby community doing great things
We continue to receive wonderful stories from the rugby community.

Maro Itoje added some wow factor to lockdown lives as he video called, among others, frontline NHS workers, older fans and RFU Injured Player Foundation clients. Click below to read more.

Please keep sending your news to 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..
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Emergency Loan Scheme

Applications received are now being processed. If a club wants to apply for the first phase of the Emergency Loan Scheme, which is open until Thursday 30 April 2020, click here to access information, or process an application.

Other important information
COVID-19 club support webinar

We ran a webinar on 16 April to help rugby clubs understand the financial support packages available from the Government, Sport England and England Rugby with regard to COVID 19.

Click here to view the recorded webinar.

Running virtual Annual General Meetings

Many clubs will have Annual General Meetings due to take place in the coming weeks and months. Social distancing restrictions will mean that this will be difficult, or impossible. Clubs should check their constitutions to see what they can do. There will largely be three alternatives:

1. To wait and hold the AGM later in the year if and when social distancing restrictions are lifted.
2. If a calling notice has gone out for an AGM, or if the club’s constitution requires an AGM to be held before a specified date, hold the AGM but adjourn it for a later date.
3. Hold the AGM virtually. Sport England has provided some guidance on how this can be done, and details are available here.

Filing of annual accounts

Incorporated clubs should also be aware of filing deadlines for annual accounts. Both Companies House (for clubs which are companies) and the FCA (for clubs which are Registered Societies (formerly Industrial and Provident Societies) can offer extensions to filing deadlines.

Details are here for companies.

For Registered Societies, the FCA has confirmed that for any returns due up until 30 June 2020, an automatic three month extension will be granted. Further details on the FCA’s response to Covid-19 click here.

For clubs which are charities, the Charity Commission has also set out specific guidance which can be found here.

England Rugby First Aid qualification expiry

Clubs may be concerned that the England Rugby First Aid qualification which their volunteers hold may expire during the lockdown period. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has released the following guidance on this matter:

If re-qualification training is prevented for reasons associated directly with coronavirus or by complying with related government advice, it is reasonable and practical to extend the validity of current certificates by up to three months. Anyone taking advantage of this extension should be able to describe clearly their reasons for delaying requalification training, and demonstrate steps they have taken to undertake the training, if required.

This guidance comes into effect for certificates expiring on or after 16 March 2020. HSE will review this matter over the coming months and will issue further statements as necessary. You can read more here.

Online training, including webinars and eLearning, is taking place during the lockdown, please encourage your coaches, referees and volunteers to participate. Follow @RFU_GameDev on Twitter for information about the online training programme.

Back to school support resources

Supported by the World Rugby Museum, we’ve created a number of fun and interactive educational ‘School of Ruck’ resource packs. You can access the packs here. Aimed at primary school children aged 5-11 years old, these learning based activities may help support home education during the coronavirus pandemic. All activities meet the national curriculum standards and fall in line with the new Ofsted framework.

In addition, during the Six Nations England Rugby collaborated with Twinkl to produce a series of cross-curricular rugby themed resources aimed at primary school pupils. Find out more here.