Croquet – June Update to Guidelines

Dear Member,

I hope you are keeping well and staying safe.

Following our (limited) reopening on 18 May and the further government announcements and DCMS and CA guidance from 1st June, please find below our updated Notice to members, together with the CA guidance and graphic. These are also posted on the pavilion window. Government social distancing and hygiene advice continues to be the primary concern and must be followed by members and visitors to ECC at all times.

The main changes from the 18 May Notice are:

  • Up to six players/guests may be at the club at any one time, this is subject to having pre-booked via the online lawn booking system: singles or doubles on main lawn; no double banking; singles only on small lawn; and subject to maintaining the advised social distancing and hygiene standards.
  • The lawns will be reserved for club members’ practice “Sessions to six” at the following times: Sundays 2pm – 5.30pm; Tuesdays 5pm – 8pm; Thursdays 2pm to 5pm. Places are limited to six. Pre-book online to reserve your place – simply add your ‘name /’ in the Name(s) box against the appropriate lawn Bookings number – first come / first served. N.B. Roll-ups are not permitted.
  • The club is open to new membership applications.

Unfortunately, the clubhouse WCs remain closed for the time being and there are still no formal competitions.

A few games are being played, however, and the new online AC and GC ladders are there to be climbed (or descended). Member contact details for arranging games can be found in the password protected Croquet members area of the website. https://www.embersportsclub.org.uk/ember-croquet-club/members-area/ . The password is as before and will be sent to you separately on request.

Best wishes, and stay alert and safe, Simon

Ember Croquet Club – COVID 19 measures – 1 June 2020 (update to 18 May Notice)
Notice to Croquet Members

Please read carefully for your safety and that of other members. If these
rules and guidance are not followed the club may have to be closed again.
From Monday 1 June all paid up croquet members will be able to play croquet following the guidelines below. The club welcomes new membership applications subject to an introduction to the club and to the game (if appropriate, e.g. for beginners), and explanation
of the current COVID 19 restrictions.


General
 Paid up members for 2020-2021 are eligible to play.
 Up to six members may be present at the club at any one time, subject to having pre-booked.
 Members may bring guests providing their names are recorded in the lawn pre-booking system and the number of members and guests together at the croquet ground is no more than six. Visitor playing fees should be paid into the club account referencing ‘Visitors Fee – Croquet.’ Non-member partners/parents/siblings/children from the same household are asked to pay a visitor fee.
 Club members’ practice sessions ‘Sessions to Six’ are on Sundays 2pm – 5.30pm, Tuesdays 5pm – 8pm and Thursdays 2pm – 5pm and are subject to pre-booking (‘first come first served’)
 Do not play if self isolating or feeling ill in any way.
 Observe the 2 metre social distancing rules at all times, including entering and leaving the premises. Beware of bottlenecks along The Drive entrance and along the path by tennis courts 6 and 7.
 Please wash hands before leaving home, on arriving at the lawns and on leaving the lawns and when you arrive home. You are advised to bring your own hand sanitiser/wipes or soap & hotwater and gloves.
 You are permitted to play Doubles or Singles on the main lawn.
 Singles is permitted on the small lawn, but not Doubles
 No double banking on lawns is permitted.
 The clubhouse is closed so there are no toilet facilities available.
 Please follow NHS test and trace Guidance and inform the chairman if you or a guest becomes ill within 14 days of visiting the club.


Lawn Bookings
 To play you must first book a lawn via ESC website Croquet members area. You may make a booking without having an opponent. This could be either for solo practice or as a way of making a general invitation to members of the booker’s availability to play.
 If you are a paid up member and do not have booking access please contact Steve Edney
 Lawns are bookable in 30 minute units, up to three hours in total, every day from 9am to 8pm.
 Play should end 30 minutes before the end of your booked time to allow you time for cleaning and putting away equipment and leaving before the next booked time.
 Please keep a record of your bookings together with a list of people who played, for tracking purposes.


At the Lawn
 Players must use their own mallet and not touch their opponent’s mallet. A designated club mallet may be allocated to you upon application to the club secretary. Club mallets must otherwise be pre-sanitised by the club and the player both before and after play.
 Please do not enter the pavilion or any other building except for shed 2.
 Before opening shed 2 wash/sanitise your hands with the soap or sanitiser you have brought with you. (Endeavours will be made to maintain a supply of soap, paper towels, antiseptic wipes or spray in the shed if you have forgotten to bring your own but this cannot be guaranteed). Use the water tap next to the pavilion and the washing up bowl in the pallet under the yellow hose as necessary.
 Players must agree which of them is to enter shed 2 to collect and return the hoops, peg, ball sets, clips and bisques and wash/sanitise them on collection and on return.
 Other players must stay well behind the white line in front of the door to shed 2.
 If the hoops are already out leave them out.
 Use antiseptic spay and wipes for cleaning clips and bisques, if used.
 Use soap and water for cleaning ball sets.
 For timed matches use a timer on a watch or phone – and players should referee their
own matches appropriately.
 Wear gloves for the contact touch-points above.
 Seating: it is suggested you bring your own lightweight folding chair. Alternatively,use one of the white plastic chair stored outside: make sure you clean with antiseptic wipe or spray both before and at the end of the game. If you sit on a bench, avoid touching it with your hand.
 Wearing gloves during play is advisable. Consider wearing a face covering if there is a moderate easterly breeze and tennis courts are in use.
 Use your feet to retrieve and manoeuvre balls. Avoid touching any ball with an ungloved hand.
 Take special care when placing or removing a clip from a hoop. If you or your opponent feel using clips causes one of you anxiety, then try golf croquet instead, or other croquet formats, e.g. two ball match-play.
 When the game is complete remember not to shake hands and remember that the player who put all the equipment out is the player to wash/sanitise again and return all to shed 2. Wipe clean the padlock when you have closed the door.


Coaching
 One to One coaching may be available on request to Roger Dollimore
These rules apply currently and may be amended as time goes on, so please look again at the website or on the pavilion door each time you play.
Enjoy your game but please remember there is still a risk of contracting COVID 19. So Stay Alert, obey the social distancing rules and wash/sanitise your hands before arrival and before leaving.
Note: wearing of gloves and/or face mask, during play, is a matter of personal choice.
Remember to bring with you next time you play: sanitiser or soap and hotwater, cloth or paper towels, glove(s), mallet, lightweight folding garden chair, and a drink.

Croquet Association Poster

Croquet Association Guidance
Covid-19 Precautions for Playing Croquet
Version 4- 31st May, 2020


The Croquet Association offers the following advice to clubs and players, to
minimise the risk of infection by Covid-19 when clubs decide to open for play.
This version applies to clubs in England from 1st June until further notice.
Both clubs and players should follow Government guidance, particularly those in vulnerable groups; this advice supplements that general guidance by covering situations specific to croquet. The advice has been updated as shown in the change log at the end of the document. It may be further updated if government advice changes.
The guidance published by DCMS on 13th May states that organisations are
encouraged to think creatively about how best to make their sport or activity possible within the guidelines, but also that they should only reopen or restart activities as soon as they feel able to do so safely. These guidelines should be read in conjunction with that advice. They have been updated in line with the further relaxation of the lockdown in England from 1st June, but it is up to clubs to decide whether they can safely accommodate more people playing or spectating.
These are uncertain and very unsettling times. We want our community to stay physically and mentally healthy and as long as it is safe to do, and provided that it is consistent with Government guidance, we want to keep the croquet lawns open and available for members to use. We hope you all stay healthy and that we all get through these challenging times by looking to help each other where we can.
Meanwhile, keep safe, take care, look after yourself and, if possible, enjoy your croquet.


Advice to Clubs
The CA recommends that clubs adopt this advice and adapt it to their
circumstances. The advice below recognises that there are now more stringent measures that must be followed if our sport is to be managed in a safe way.

  1. Clubhouses should only be open to the extent required to access
    equipment, toilet and hand washing facilities. Bars and catering facilities should remain closed.
  2. Ensure that the necessary facilities and cleaning products are available to maintain a clean environment and enable players to wash equipment after use.
  3. Provide hand washing facilities and/or hand sanitiser for players.
  4. Only pre-arranged games, coaching or individual practice should be
    permitted, not roll-up or public sessions. There should be no more than four players on a court for play: either one game of singles; two, double-banked, games of singles; or one game of doubles. For coaching, up to five players in addition to the coach are permitted; the coach is responsible for ensuring that social distancing is maintained at all times.
  5. Provide clear signs to encourage good hand washing technique, social
    distancing and limits to the number of players per court.
  6. Consider providing a lawn-booking system, both to avoid congestion and to facilitate contact tracing if necessary.
  7. It is a matter for clubs to decide whether they can now accommodate
    guests, visitors or specatators, but if they do it is recommended that a
    record should be kept to facilitate contact tracing if necessary.
  8. Whether or not in play, no more than six players, guests, visitors or
    spectators should be permitted in any group and 2m social distancing
    should be observed within it.
  9. Where equipment can be left out, then it is preferable to do so. Nonessential equipment should be stored away.
  10. Avoid the need to share club mallets. Consider allowing members to
    borrow one for a while.

Advice to Players

  1. Do not go to the club if you are experiencing any symptoms of a cold or flu, in particular a cough or high temperature. Use the NHS helpline and seek advice. For your own protection, follow the advice about self-isolation if you are, or are living with, someone in one of the vulnerable groups.
  2. All players must keep 2m apart at all times unless they are in the same
    household. Particular care should be taken in all doubles, including
    alternate stroke Association Croquet and in Golf Croquet games.
  3. Any activity should be in line with the Government’s social distancing
    measures at all times, including when going to and departing from a lawn. Consequently, do not shake hands before or after a game.
  4. Wash your hands and clean any equipment you use, such as hoops, balls and club mallets, before and after you play.
  5. When setting out and taking in a court, only one person should handle any particular hoop or the peg.
  6. Clean padlocks, keys and door handles before and after use.
  7. Avoid using toilets wherever possible and clean after use.
  8. Use the court booking system if your club provides one, rather than
    turning up in the hope of being able to play or practise.
  9. If possible, dress appropriately prior to travelling to the club, rather than changing there.
  10. Bring any food or drink you might need.
  11. Do not use clips, corner pegs/offside markers or flags (unless needed to secure string boundaries). Players should agree the score at the end of each scoring turn. Personal counters should be used to keep count of bisques/extra strokes.
  12. Do not move stop-boards/check fences, but take relief instead.
  13. Avoid using movable chairs as far as possible, otherwise clean them
    before and after use.
  14. Use your feet, rather than hands, to position balls where you can do so
    with sufficient precision, including when moving or replacing balls from a double-banked game. If playing Association Croquet, handle only you own ball(s), not those of your opponent.
  15. Players should be their own Referees and acknowledge faults and errors if they occur.


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