Parliament has today voted in favour of the Government’s national lockdown proposals aimed at curbing the increase in Covid-19 cases in England, which take effect from tomorrow (Thursday 5 November) until Wednesday 2 December. In addition, the Government has announced the cessation of all community team sports during this period, which applies to Age Grade and Adult rugby activities below Championship and Premier 15s.
With effect from tomorrow (Thursday 5 November 2020), we return to Stage A on the Return to Community Rugby Roadmap. This means that no competitive or formal rugby activities can be undertaken until at least Wednesday 2 December. While group training sessions are banned, a maximum of two players can participate in socially distanced (two metres plus), individual training sessions outside without sharing equipment.
We will now review what the implications of this national lockdown plan mean for clubhouses, schools, colleges, universities, etc., and will provide more detailed information in the Covid-19 Community Game Update tomorrow.
In addition, we would like to advise that the RFU Competitions Team is working with the Competitions Organising Committees for Men and Women to finalise alternative competitions models in place of the cancelled 2020/21 league programme. These will be entirely optional for clubs and will have no impact on promotion/relegation. They will focus on local cluster leagues and offer a framework for clubs to Return to Play (in some format once we have government approval to do so). It is intended to circulate these proposals, inviting clubs to participate, on Friday 13 November.
[NB the accompanying image shows green ticks to STAGE C – we are, of course, back to STAGE A]