The UK Government has announced that a revised local restriction tier system will be introduced from 2 December 2020. You can read more about these tiers at the government website and their implications for day to day life.
Below we outline how these tiers affect our existing EPSB guidance and the measures that we advise all snooker facilities to follow.
As with all EPSB COVID guidance we strongly advise all facilities to consult with their Local Authority and Health and Safety Executive.
Tier 1: Medium alert
National restrictions including the ‘rule of 6’ continue to be in place and therefore our main facility re-opening guidance continues to apply with the revision that clubs providing hospitality must close their hospitality areas between 11pm and 5am and stop taking orders after 10pm.
Snooker tables can continue to be used outside these times.
Tier 2: High alert
Our existing EPSB guidance continues to apply EXCEPT for the following points based upon government policy (bold):
“In tier 2 areas: organised indoor sport (including team and individual sport, personal training and exercise classes), can only take place where there is no mixing between households. This means that people from the same household or support bubble can take part in sport or physical activity together. Individuals or separate households (or support bubbles) can participate in a single indoor sport activity (such as an exercise class) if they can stay separate and distinct from those from other households, and avoid physical contact and proximity (whether deliberate or inadvertent). Contact combat sports are not permitted.” – Source: 1 December 2020, DCMS
“In tier two areas, indoor sport can take place within households, and people can take part in group activity like exercise classes as long as there is no mixing between households. People can play certain sports which do not involve close proximity or physical contact against one person from another household, such as a singles tennis match or badminton match.” – Source: Press Release, 23 November 2020, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden.
In line with the DCMS NGB action plan, we have reviewed our sport’s Covid-19 Risk Assessment against the latest government guidance, which has informed our latest Covid-19 protocols for clubs and players.
Snooker is an indoor sport that does not involve close proximity or physical contact. Clubs and players must continue to strictly follow our EPSB Covid-19 Guidance so that the playing environment is Covid-19 secure.
Any snooker activity (match play or practice) on one table must be played as solo practice or singles matches only (no doubles), but players can come from two different households.
Adult group coaching cannot take place under this guidance. However, strictly one-to-one coaching can resume. The coaching of groups of junior and disabled players may also continue in line with previous guidance, as U18s and disabled people are exempt from these restrictions.
Tier 3: Very High alert
This is for areas with a very high or very rapidly rising level of infections, where tighter restrictions are in place.
“…indoor entertainment and tourist venues must close. This includes… snooker halls.” Source: ‘Local restriction tiers: what you need to know’, 23 November, Department of Health and Social Care.
Unfortunately, this means that snooker clubs in Tier 3 areas must remain closed for the time being. The EPSB continues to seek clarity from the UK government on this policy.
One-to-one coaching can resume using private facilities that are not open to the public.
What level is my area?
You can check the local restriction tier in your area from 26 November 2020 at https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus