Dear Member

I hope you are keeping safe and well. 

Well, we’re nearly there, and we are looking forward to welcoming many of you back to the club for a drink and a catch-up this weekend. We will be open at 2pm on Saturday 4th July until 10pm, so do come along at some point if you are able. 

It will be a quite different experience when you arrive. The weather doesn’t look too great for Saturday, so we expect to be inside, which does have a limited capacity, particularly with the social distancing and other restrictions in place.

We have been working with John Rearden, the Club Manager, on our operating procedures, and we have carried out a full Risk Assessment as required under the new guidelines. Having had further consideration and looking at the practicalities within the club, these have changed a bit since our initial thoughts, so please take the time to review how we will be working, below. 

There is a lot of detail here, which reflects the guidelines we must work to and the amount of work that has gone into assuring that we can meet the guidelines and operate safely. Staff will be on hand to guide you through it until we all get used to it and it settles down.

  • Please do not come to the club if you are feeling unwell or have any of the symptoms of COVID-19
  • Members and their households only – each group must have a member who will be required to show their membership card when ordering drinks. No valid membership card will mean no service. Please contact Ian Smillie at membership@northernclub.uk if you need a new card.
  • Each group must contain no more than 2 households or a maximum of 6 people in total.
  • Entrance to the club will be by Members’ Bar door entrance only. Exit by Lounge door only. Please observe this whilst at the club to reduce physical contact at the entrance and exit points. 
  • Please no standing immediately outside the entrance to the bar (unless queuing to get in) or immediately outside the Lounge exit (Blerter’s Perch).
  • On arrival members will be asked to list each person in their group for track and trace purposes, and this data will be held by the club for 21 days as required. A registration desk will be placed at entrance to the Members’ Bar, with a sign-in sheet. Pens will be provided, but please use your own if you can.
  • Please wait to be seated by the staff, and then take your seats – please do not move chairs and tables. 
  • Take the sign-in sheet to the bar with your first order. A raffle ticket will be given out once the member signs in as evidence of registration, which you will need each time you come to the bar to order. 
  • The bar is screened, please place your order at the order point and wait for your drinks, which will be delivered through a serving hatch. 
  • Card payments only, contactless preferred, no cash
  • No standing inside except limited queue for the bar. If there is a significant queue, please remain seated until it quietens down.
  • Only one person at a time can place an order. Please observe social distancing whilst queuing. 
  • Please ensure children are properly supervised. Under 14’s to be seated at all times inside the club – children should not approach the bar.
  • Disabled access by disabled ramp as normal.
  • There will be limited chairs/tables available outside, members are encouraged to bring their own chairs/blankets.  Social distancing guidance to be observed.
  • Beer will be served in plastic glasses inside and out, at least for the time being.  A bin will be available in the bars for you to place used glasses. 
  • Toilets will be open in the Members Bar and Lounge as normal. Please use the hand washing facilities available, and wash your hands before and after visiting the club.
  • Hand sanitiser will be available at the access points.  
  • Social distancing guides will be on the floor to ensure appropriate distancing while queuing.
  • We are not permitted to screen live sport yet.
  • There will be no pizzas available, though crisps and bar snacks will be available.
  • No access to the kitchen except for staff.
  • For the time being we are intending to open Saturday and Sunday 2pm -10pm and Thursday and Friday evenings from 5pm-10pm, and closed from Mon-Weds.
  • Please visit the club website for day-to-day variations of these times as affected by the weather.
    https://northernclub.uk

These guidelines are subject to change and clarification from government, as well as our own practical adjustments as we learn from our operational activities, so please bear with us during the early phases of reopening. We know that we won’t have got everything right, and that when we start operating we will learn what’s working and what isn’t. I expect we can also learn from some of the other bars and pubs who are all in the same boat, so we are happy to consider ideas that may be working elsewhere. Please also give us feedback on how you think it is going, and what else you think we should be doing to operate safely and efficiently within the guidelines. 

The weather looks a bit better on Sunday, albeit likely to be breezy, so we will be open outside – you will need to come inside to get your drinks and follow the same process as above. Should it be busy and we get a heavy shower, there may not be capacity inside for everyone, and staff will need to ask people to enter in an orderly fashion to allow for social distancing to be maintained and numbers to be controlled. This may involve queuing in the rain, so please come prepared. Once capacity is reached it will then be “1 out, 1 in”.

As well as the changes inside with screening, layout and signage etc., you may also notice that the front of the clubhouse has been repainted and the main entrance staircase replaced. Big thanks to Alan Murphy for overseeing the works, as well as making and fitting the new bannisters (which look fantastic), with help from Mark Halliwell and Ste Thurston. 

Thanks again also to Eddie Sturmy and John Ellison for their work around the grounds recently, and Neilan Symondson who came out at short notice to attend to a major leak on the squash court roof. Also a huge thanks to all the committee members and club officers who have been doing an enormous amount of work behind the scenes to ensure the club remains financially secure, and in preparing to reopen.

Thanks also to you, our members, for all the support you have given us during lockdown, and now as we emerge into the new normality. 

I hope you can join us at some point this weekend. I can’t wait for a freshly pulled pint of ale myself!

Best wishes

Martin


Martin McEwan
President