Our BookingsGuru Manager, Sam Nixon, answers your questions about how to safely return to lettings out your school facilities…
Q. Is it safe to return to lettings?
A. The latest Government guidelines suggest that outdoor activities can start to take place immediately. You may want to consider restricting or prohibiting use of your indoor changing areas to eradicate the need for additional cleaning at this early stage. As well as obvious activities which can take place on grass and astro pitches, also consider if any of your indoor lettings could temporarily change to an outdoor space. Many activities, such as, boot camps, dance classes, children’s classes and fitness are appropriate to take place on grass, MUGA’s and playgrounds, weather dependent.
We would recommend trailing use of your outdoor areas to ‘test’ your new procedures and protocols before introducing a phased re-opening of indoor facilities.
You can read all the latest Government guidance online:
- COVID-19: Guidance for the safe use of multi-purpose community facilities
- Protective measures for out-of-school settings during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak
- Guidance for providers of outdoor facilities on the phased return of sport and recreation in England
Q. How do I assess which lettings are appropriate to take place or not?
A. The first thing to do is to carry out a risk assessment of your site taking into account how the use of specific areas will affect staff, hirers and users.
Identify suitable facilities which can be most safely used – this may include lower-risk spaces such as outdoor MUGA’s and pitches, larger spaces which can accommodate social distancing during classes, those which are well ventilated and spaces which have separate access and egress. Once you have determined the safest areas to re-open evaluate the risks which could affect their use:
- How will you ensure good and consistent hygiene levels during and after use?
- How will you manage the use of common areas?
- Will you need additional staff to help manage access and egress from site, high congestion areas and cleaning of common areas?
- Will your first aid provision or procedure for on-site accidents and injuries need to change?
- How will you arrange your staff shifts to minimise the risk of outbreaks within the team?
Q. How do I ensure my hirers are compliant with the Government guidelines?
A. We’d advise updating both your hirer code of conduct and site T&Cs. Your code of conduct should be a summary of your new terms of hire and should be displayed and visible to hirers and users whilst on site. Any additional terms and conditions should be agreed by your hirers prior to them accessing your site.
You may wish to include things such as:
- Ensuring hirers are aware of the Government guidelines and set out what is expected from them on arrival at your site.
- Asking hirers to supply you with a risk assessment for their own activities, stating how they will ensure they are compliant with the Government guidelines.
- Ensuring hirers will be collecting up-to-date contact details for all group attendees – contact details can then be used for track and trace purposes.
Q. How do ensure the safety of staff, hirers and users whilst on site?
A. It is almost certain your current cleaning protocol will need to be adapted to comply with the Government guidance and social distancing measures. You’ll likely need to increase the frequency of some of your cleaning tasks, you may need to introduce new cleaning equipment such as disposable gloves and cloths and additional spray bottles, mops etc.
Ensure your staff have access to any personal protective equipment (PPE) they may need including aprons, gloves and face coverings. Encourage staff to wash uniforms following each shift – you may need to provide additional uniform temporarily.
Display clear signage to direct hirers and users on site and introduce sanitising stations in appropriate areas.
To find out how our BookingsGuru service can help you prepare for re-opening to lettings, and to maximise your lettings income on your behalf, speak to our team on 01604 677 764 or email email@example.com.