RETURN TO PLAY INFORMATION
This is a new page set-up on the 23rd July 2020 and all information relating to Covid-19 and Table Tennis will gradually be put on this page along with associated links to items on the TTE website, and information on the status within Sussex County in respect of Leagues and Clubs. It also includes information on Mental Health.The information placed on this page in the following weeks and months will hopefully answer all your questions, but if not then please contact me on the email address below.
11th April 2021 - Ready to Return?
At last, there seems to be light at the end of the tunnel when from tomorrow, 12th April, U18's can participate indoors in organised Coaching and Competition Events and those that I have been aware of in Sussex are shown on the Cadet and Junior Page. A TTE Clubs and Leagues Update - 060421 - advertised a "Ready to Return" Webinar with links to the latest guidance on the TTE Website as at 8th April, and also information and funding opportunities to support return.
The Webinar recording (personal by Brett Holt) can be found on the following link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7stS5nzg_Gk and contains:
- Information on the current government timeline;
- Venue Spacing requirements - one table 55sqm (10m x 5.5m or 9m x 4.5m) or multi-table at least 8m x 4.5m;
- Support funding that can be applied for from Sport England and TTE;
- Information on Participation Programmes - TT Kidz, Bat and Chat, Back to TT, Local Leagues (later this year);
- Venue Support - Risk Assessment Template, Venue Checklist, Template Player Codes of Conduct and lots more;
- News of Junior Participation Webinar on the 21st April;
- Questions - Coaching requires minimum L1 Licence, U18 driven by government (excludes new U19 category), TTE Coaching Courses planned to return in June, Vaccinations do not change guidance and clubs banning non-vaccinated people not advisable at the moment, Sanitizers should be personal but Clubs should have also, Codes of Conduct for Players need to be signed (or refused entry), guidance generally not too specific detail
9th December 2020 - Covid-19 Update - Tier Restrictions - Sussex County
The latest Covid-19 information is as at 4.30 pm on the 3rd December on the TTE Website (see latest TTE News below). It indicates the restrictions for the various Tiers and at the moment the County of Sussex is all Tier 2 which means that League play is not possible. The impact is that the Haywards Heath and East Grinstead Leagues which had started and stopped for the recent lockdown, are not able to restart. Let's hope that the New Year will bring much good news on the playing front!!
2nd November 2020 - Covid-19 Update - Back to Stage 1
Sadly, with the latest Government Statements on Lockdown, it means that for all those Clubs and Leagues who managed to get resumption of play in recent months it is back to square one. Please see the latest TTE Update with link to statement on the TTE website link (also below) as at 11.20 am today:
29th October 2020 - Covid-19 Update - Webinar
TTE recently held a couple of Webinars on the impact of the various Covid-19 Tiers and one of them can be viewed on the following - 261020. It was noted that TTE had indicated it was working with national bodies to try and get Schools to open up to Community Groups as this was still the major factor affecting Clubs and return to play. It was also noted that Local Leagues cannot operate if their area is Tier 2 or 3, and swapping ends during a game is OK subject to quick wipe, and you do not have to put your mask back on immediately after a game if you are still recovering from the game!. There were lots of questions on the video and many were around Coaching guidelines. Also included besides the Webinar was a request for Covid-19 stories (see News Item 16th October below) and information about the Sports England Funding for the Sports Sector as a whole.
16th October 2020 - Covid-19 Stories
A Sports Recovery Fund is being supported by TTE in the context of protection of jobs and facilities and they are inviting Stories from Clubs about the impact of Covid-19, not only on the Club but the League, Volunteers and/or local communitties in respect of financial impact on individuals such as preventing a coach to operate. Information about the request can be found here, and the closing date for Stories is Sunday 18th October.
16th October 2020 - TTE Update - Impact of Tiers
The introduction of the Tier System by the UK Government has an impact on those competitions and Leagues that are taking place within the Tier 2 and Tier 3 areas, and also on players attending events from those areas to other areas. Please see the latest TTE information on this dated 9.20 am Friday 16th October on the link on the recent TTE News - 131020.
2nd October 2020 - Return of TT - Updated Information
In the light of recent Government Guidance on the 22nd September updated information was produced by TTE on the 23rd September - TTE Newsletter - 230920 - It indicated no major changes to organised TT with continuation of bubbles of 6 although checks need to be made if there are any additional local Council restrictions - I am not aware of any in Sussex. A subsequent TTE Newsletter - 240920 - on the following day reiterated bubbles of 6 for Adults, Mixed Age Groups and for Competition, and further that TT Community Clubs can operate with bubbles of 15 for under-18's. On the latter there is a large addition to the TTE Hygiene and Facility Guidance which is now at Version 14 (dated 24th September), and so a qualified coach for instance can run after-school sessions in Sports Halls. The other major change is for TT activities to complete by 10 pm although this was subsequently clarified - Update 250920 - as to not apply to Gyms, Leisure Centres and Sports Clubs where there were no cafe/restaurant.
With reference to the News Item on the 8th September regarding cleaning between different Hirers, this is dependent on the arrangements negotiated for access to a venue and it is more than likely that the Club will be told to take responsibility for cleaning down surfaces used in Club Venues such as tables, balls, barrier handles and Chairs (as against confirmation in writing that venues are being cleaned in between Hirers which may be more applicable to larger venues such as Sports Halls. Both options are covered within the TTE Hygiene and Facility Guidance.
8th September 2020 - Return of TT - Updated/New TTE Documents
TTE has updated the following documents relating to the opening of Clubs and the return to League Play. There are a number of updates within the Hygiene document around ensuring balls are washed, bubbles of 2-6, venue ventilation and signage and in particular the need to obtain in writing that venues are being cleaned between different hirers. The Coaching document appears to be a new one. The Local League document advises that information should be included to cover situations where local lockdowns are in effect as well as venue and playing spaces with the latter also the update within the Venue Layouts.
- Layout and Use Guidance - Sports Hall, Clubroom Venues, Leisure Centres - Version 5.4 - 4th September
- Hygiene and Facility Guidance; - V11 - 1st September
- Coaching Activity; - Version 4 - 8th September
- Local League Guidance;- Version 3 - 4th September
- Ready to Return League FAQs - Version 1 - 8th September (from the League Webinar of the 24th August)
The suggested Process (at V4) through all the TTE Documentation (as produced by Sussex County) that is on the Covid-19 Page has been updated with this information. Also check the TTE Website and Ready to Return Page for changes and any new documentation - the link is within the latest TTE Counties and Leagues Update - 040920.
24th August 2020 - Sussex County Information - Updated/New TTE Documents
TTE has updated some documents and in particular the Risk Assessment, and has also produced documents relating to the opening of Clubs and the return to League Play as follows:
The suggest Process (at V3) through all the TTE Documentation that is on the Covid-19 Page has been updated with this information. Also check the TTE Website and Ready to Return Page for changes and any new documentation.
31st July 2020 - Sussex County Information - Suggested Process and Status
Please find a suggested Process for addressing and completing all the TTE Guidance for your League/Club (Updated 3rd August with latest TTE Statement and updated versions Hygiene and Coaching Documents). If opened on this website the links should be active, otherwise use the links below. There are two major issues within Sussex:
1. Access to venues are dependent on the venue owners whch in the majority of cases are Schools and Community Centres, and most are not in a poistion to discuss until September;
2. TTE Guidance and court sizes for Club Venues required to be 9m x 4.5m providing a playing area of 40.5sqm. There is the view that the guidance needs to fit individual facility constraints since most club venues cannot accommodate such definition, and it has been pointed out that modified layouts of 8m x 5m or 7.5m x 5.5m would provide the same playing areas and adequate spacing for most club play and even this can be varied further as long as measures such as safe, clean, well ventilated, socially distanced environment is in place then play can resume.
In discussion with TTE (Greg Yarnell) TTE Guidance is effectively just that, and in respect of any reductions in club venues it depends on the severity and likelihood of any breach occurring from the ideal guidelines as assessed within the Risk Assessment (Social Distancing Item). Flexibility on court sizes with same playing area or slightly reduced for single table club venues was not seen as a problem as long as Risk Assessment mitigates it and all other guidelines in respect of safe, clean, well ventilated and a socially distanced environment can be followed. Reduced playing areas for multi-table venues with barriers and particularly balls into adjacent courts is seen as more of problem if there are changes to the ideal recommended guidelines.
The TTE Personal Insurance is currently being renewed (due end of July) and there are currently no exclusions for Covid-19, but for any claims it would be difficult to determine where a person was infected unless Clubs have shown no attempt to put in place the guidelines and liability can therefore be questioned. It is therefore essential that Risk Assessments are in place which details mitigation steps taken for any venues that slightly differ from the ideal.
Sussex Status - Please see spreadsheet showing the current status of Leagues/Clubs within Sussex, and it is fluid and being updated as information becomes available.
27th July 2020 - TTE - Return to Play Information - Slides & Webinar
There have been a number of Webinars recently to discuss "Return to Play" and please see the Slides that were presented. Additionally, the TTE Newsletter - 170720 - has a video of one of the Webinar's. Some of the questions asked, and answered are around:
- Use of venues between Hires of Venues - Tables and Chairs and door handles should be cleaned;
- Cleaning Tables - use mild soapy spray and not any alcohol based;
- No need to clean floors between sessions;
- No restrictions on households within bubbles up to 6;
- New bubbles can be held for different sessions after a week;
- Coaches can be in more than one bubble;
- Face coverings should be used in enclosed places if not playing;
- Booking System on Club Spark (for Premier Clubs) now made available to be used by any Club;
- TTE Insurance up for renewal end of July and not yet clear on any detail for disclaimers for people catching Covid-19;
- Accepted that Club may struggle with reduced income with lower numbers and overheads the same;
- There can be no more than 50% people waiting to play i.e. no more that 4 if 8 people playing;
- Risk Assessment are key documents and should be in place before contact with venue owners;
- Clubs need to ensure Club Policies for Covid-19 are updated;
23rd July 2020 - TTE - Return to Play Information
Return to Play - This Newsletter, issued on the 14th Friday, gives links to the various documents on the TTE Website and for which the information within should be used in consideration of moving to Stage 2 which is "Limited Club Activity" for indoor Table Tennis. The links and documents are as follows for ease of reference and they are the latest versions as at 23rd July:
- Stage 1 - Play and Exercise at Home;
- Ready to Return latest statement by TTE as at Wednesday July 22nd with information on the 5-Stage Process - see link: https://tabletennisengland.co.uk/news/archived/ready-to-return-latest-statement/
- Stage 2 - Hygiene and Facility Guidance;
- Stage 2 - Clubs with own facility;
- Stage 2 - Guidance for Managing Session Numbers;
- Stage 2 - Coaching Activity;
- Stage 2 - Clubroom Venues - Layout and Use Guidance;
- Stage 2 - Leisure Centres - Layout and Use Guidance;
- Stage 2 - Sports Halls - Layout and Use Guidance;
- Stage 2 - Risk Assessment;
- Stage 2 - Method Statement;
- Stage 2 - Venue Cleaning Checklist;
- Stage 2 - Codes of Conduct;
- Stage 2 - Covid Officer Role;
- Stage 2 - Poster for Facilities;
- Stage 2 - Consumer Poster;
- FAQ's Link:https://tabletennisengland.co.uk/news/archived/coronavirus-and-table-tennis-faqs/
- Webinar Link:https://tabletennisengland.co.uk/news/archived/watch-our-ready-to-return-webinar-2/
- Stage 3 - Preparing for return to League Table Tennis;
23rd July - Mental Health - TTE Over The Net 14th July
TTE issued a special Mental Health "Over The Net" Newsletter on the 14th July. Although the lock down is over for many of us there are still some who have to remain sheilded and we all have to stay alert and not put ourselves into situations that not only affects one personally, but subsequently close family and friends. This can affect everyone of us in different ways and we all need to be on the lookout for people we believe are not coping. The main message, if you believe you are having problems is to talk to someone.
The Newsletter contains:
- An Article by Lyndsey Simpson - a 23 year-old player, coach and umpire from Blackpool on her mental health issues, and how table tennis has been a great help in overcoming them;
- A Podcast with England players Liam Pitchford and Sam Walker - It details how they dealt with difficulties they experienced such as loss of motivation and its impact on them mentally and it also includes someone from the MIND Charity;
- A Message from MIND and Mental Health Toolkit - A range of information and support items including "Five Ways to Wellbeing", "Talking to Someone" and links to "Campaigns".
- Mental Health Awareness for Sport and Physical Activity Online Course - This course usually costs £18 and is free until the end of August and is being made available by MIND and UK Coaching, and enables mental health awareness for all sport and physical activiity. There are 4 Modules produced by both 1st4Sport and UK Coaching and funded by Sport England.