In preparation for any potential resumption of activity, the Governing Body has issued its guidance for Northern Irish clubs to allow considerate preparations and safe planning before restarting any activity, once permitted under the NI Executive’s Plan.  The guidance will also be available through the RYANI Website.   

The guidance has been created as part of the RYA’s ongoing support for Affiliated Clubs during the Covid-19 pandemic. It includes advice on how clubs may be able to facilitate activity while minimising the risk of transmitting infection (including social distancing and adequate cleaning and hygiene) and how to reduce the likelihood of a call-out to emergency services through enhanced risk assessment, maintenance and safety.  

Mary Martin, RYANI’s Development Officer explains: “We are pleased to be able to offer this practical guidance to clubs to help them plan for the future.  Clubs in Northern Ireland have closed during this lockdown period and we know people want to ensure they are well prepared for any potential resumption of activity.  

“We are encouraging clubs to take their time and use this information to carefully plan and develop their own policies which will best suit their venues. Public Health must remain as the primary concern when clubs are able to ease back into activity.  This will likely involve creating a team who will be responsible for reviewing what’s practically possible, deciding what’s best for their club and implementing those decisions effectively with clear communication to their membership.  

“We urge the members of clubs and the wider boating community to be patient.  We remain with the same restrictions in place until otherwise announced by the NI Executive.”   

RYANI recognises that without a definitive timeline for the easing of restrictions, planning for clubs will be difficult. This guidance is to ensure they can be as prepared as possible to facilitate a safe return to activity with appropriate social distancing measures, hygiene procedures and risk management practices.   

The RYA as a whole has been working as a collective across all four Home Nations in order to issue guidance that is specific to any restrictions that may be specific to each devolved government.   Guidance for RYA Recognised Training Centres and Instructors has also been issued to Principals.  

The RYANI team are also offering a series of online Club Development Forums as an opportunity for people in clubs to come together and share their thoughts on the challenges that lie ahead. Project #SailFromHome also shares interactive webinars and club development content every Thursday.  

Further Covid-19 advice for clubs, classes and training centres, as well as recreational boating in the UK and abroad, can be found on the RYA website with further information on the RYA Northern Ireland website.