Hockey pitch reopening – 27.5.2020

On 21/05/20 England Hockey released guidance on returning to play hockey as soon, and as safely, as possible.  That guidance can be found here.

A summary of the key points for the Northern Club is here:

  1. Check for symptoms of COVID-19. In line with current Government guidance, if you are symptomatic, living in a household with a possible COVID-19 infection or if you are classified as extremely vulnerable on health grounds, you should remain at home and follow Government guidance.
  • You can exercise outdoors (ie utilise the pitch) on your own, with members of your household or with one other person from outside your household while keeping two metres apart at all times. You must only exercise in groups of two people or less, unless you are exercising exclusively with members of your household.
  • You must book a slot to use the pitch. This is to ensure we can control the usage, and also keep a record of who has used the pitch.
  • Please see below for the booking procedure. You will not be allowed to use the pitch without a booking slot, so please do not attend unless you have one. Anyone without a booking slot will be asked to leave.
  • Social distancing of at least two metres must be maintained at all times (unless all participants are members of the same household).
  • Coaching can only be conducted on a one-to-one basis (with one observer if coaching under 18’s to meet safeguarding guidance). Booking must be made by the coach.
  • The pitch will be split in to thirds, only goal end thirds will be available for booking at any time.  The pitch will be available for booking 10am until 9pm Monday – Sunday. Pitch 1 is the first third closest to the tiffin, whilst pitch 2 is the opposite end, closest to the overspill car park.
  • The goals will be positioned in their rightful place in each D at opposite ends of the pitch.  The goals must not be moved.
  • There are no changing facilities open on site. Please arrive ready to play.
  1. There will be no toilet facilities open on site. Each practice slot is 50 minutes long, so please use your own facilities before you arrive.
  1. There is a 10 minute gap between each booking slot to allow for safe entry and exit to the pitch, and to allow for any necessary sanitisation. When you arrive, leave your kitbags inside the fence line and at safe space (at least 2m away) from other kit/bags that may be there.
  1. Please bring your own personal hand sanitiser. Before entering, and after leaving the pitch, please sanitise your hands. The gate to the pitches will hopefully be open when you arrive to avoid you having to touch it. This will be dependant on bookings made before or after however, you may be required to unlock and lock the facility and will be advised of this when booking. If you do touch any surfaces, please sanitise your hands after doing so.
  1. You must use your own equipment and hockey balls.  One person on the booking is responsible for supplying ball(s) and any other training equipment (cones etc).  They should be the only person in physical contact (ie touching with hands) of those items.
  1. Players should avoid picking up balls – use only your stick or kick the ball, the person providing the ball(s) should retrieve their ball(s) should they exit the pitch boundaries or require physical contact to retrieve.
  1.  No saliva or sweat should come into contact with the ball at any time.
  1. Wash hands at home before and after using the outdoor facilities.
  1. Please bring a reusable drinks bottle, preferably marked with your name, and do not discard any litter whilst at the club. Take all items away with you.
  1. All other safety rules relating to hockey and pitch usage still apply (ie shin pads, gum shields, appropriate footwear).
  1. When using the facility there may not be any others on site at the time of use so for Health & Safety please ensure you have a fully charged mobile phone to call emergency services if needed and basic first aid resources with you. Our cricket coach Steve Cole who is First Aid trained may be on site supervising the cricket nets next to the astro at some times throughout the week (mainly between 3-7pm Monday and Friday and 10am-2pm on Saturdays).

Booking Procedure

  1. Only authorised persons (coaches and fully paid up members who are 18 and over) are able to book the pitch. They will be classed as the ‘slot lead’.
  •  Only club members can utilise the pitch, non members need prior permission from the committee and will require a member buddy in attendance if authorised.
  • Hockey section bookings will be made via our dedicated WhatsApp group entitled ‘NHC Seniors Group’.  An authorised person should request a slot and name all parties who will attend.  This will be assessed by Tom Pfeiffer and a confirmation returned within the WhatsApp chat and access codes sent separately for gates. If you are not a member of this group please contact Tom on 07480739117
  • Bookings will  be taken on a first-come first served basis, however priority booking may be given to authorised coaches should the committee see fit
  • The ‘slot lead’ must always be present when the pitch facilities are in use as per their booking
  • Junior members (those under 18) can utilise the pitch, but only in the company of an authorised person, and if under 18 their parent must remain and observe the session to fulfil safeguarding protocols.
  • Booking slots commence on the hour and are 50 minutes long, allowing for 10 minutes between each booking to allow safe entry and exit, and any necessary sanitation. Please arrive and leave promptly.
  •  It is imperative that the pitch is secure when not in use.  Unless explicitly told that another booking is to follow you, then the pitch should be secured prior to leaving the Northern Club grounds.
  • Upon confirmation of booking a slot, the ‘slot lead’ shall also receive combo lock codes for the padlocks and directed as to what pitch they have been allocated to. Padlock codes should strictly not be disseminated further. This is key to tackling misuse of the pitch and reducing the likelihood of antisocial behaviour and arson on the pitch.
  1.  If allocated pitch 1, then access should be gained via the gate nearest the floodlight power unit/bowling green.  If allocated pitch 3, then access should be gained at the gate closest to the overspill car park.
  1. The ‘slot lead’ on the booking should be the only person locking and unlocking padlocks.  They should sanitise their hands prior to handling the padlocks and post handling the padlocks. ON finishing the session and locking up you should text Tom Pfeiffer to confirm you have locked up on 07480739117. If you forget to lock up you will be asked to return to secure the pitch.
  1. Whilst demand for the pitch is measured, only one booking per group/household will be accepted per week.
  1. Pitch slots are bookable 7 days in advance.  No advance scheduling is yet permitted.

The committee is eager to open the pitch and allow hockey to return,  however the committee is committed to ensuring player safety and continued compliance with governmental guidance.  Any non-adherence to the above guidance may result in the committee once again closing the pitch,  therefore, please for everyone’s benefit stick to the guidance and if in doubt ask! This guidance will be reviewed ongoing inline with Government and England Hockey updates.

Many thanks

Your Hockey Committee