As the most disrupted season since the end of the Second World War moves into its final phase, I am pleased to advise that, from this Saturday 22 August, cricket returns to Clowes. Dealing with the Council on the resumption of cricket has been a tortuous process and, as I write, there is still much to be done, but cricket will go ahead (weather permitting) on Saturday.
To give you a feel of what the new reality will be:
- The clubhouse will be closed and will not reopen this season
- In the pavilion there will not be access to the gents toilets and changing rooms
- The ladies toilets will be open with the disabled toilet being used instead of the normal gents toilet.
- People should only enter the pavilion to use the toilets
- Only one person is permitted in each toilet
- A one way system with social distancing will operate to minimise risk of transmission of the virus
- The scoreboxes for the main and second pitches will not be used this season. Manual boards will be used instead. We need to try to minimise the number of people updating the scoreboard and scoring.
- It should not be necessary for the double sightscreens for the main pitch to be moved. For the second pitch, sanitiser will be provided for each sightscreen and should be used by players who have moved the screen
- Seats, which will have to be cleaned before use, will be provided outside and a minimum of 2 metres apart
- The benches will not be used
- No teas or drinks will be provided, players have to bring their own
- No-one other than the fielding side should touch the ball. Spectators and players from the batting team should not retrieve the ball when it crosses the boundary. If a ball is struck onto the adjacent pitch, it should not be retrieved and returned by a player on that pitch.
- In the event of rain breaks, players and officials should shelter in their vehicles. A small amount of space is available under the overhang of the main pitch scorebox and in the teas areas subject to social distancing requirements
- We will not be using the boundary rope this year
- The squares have been maintained by Mike Bullard (with help from Roger Dean and Hubert James) throughout the summer so should be in good shape
Those of you who have already played away games this year will have seen similar restrictions at those grounds. You may have seen some covid-related requirements not being followed and the League has recently issued a stern warning about this
This new world of adapting to covid means extra tasks have to be carried out when at home. Please do not expect captains to do everything, they need the help of their players more than ever before, particularly in relation to cleaning and putting out chairs before the game and bringing them back in afterwards. We also need to bring back rubbish sacks to the pavilion after each game.
Please take the risks associated with Covid-19 very seriously and play your part in making the return of cricket to Clowes a safe one for both us and our opponents.
Please find attached an updated copy of the Players and Officials Guide to Returning to Cricket together with our initial risk assessment.