A: Grange, Mullingar, Co. Westmeath, Ireland | E: info@mullingarharriers.com

Positive news on reopening of the Club (19th June)


Positive news on reopening of the Club

On Friday 19th June, the Government announced a revised roadmap for reopening society and business. Included in the revised schedule is the resumption of all sports from 29th June, but with spectator numbers limited to 50 indoors and 200 outdoors. This will increase to 100 indoors and 500 outdoors from 20th July. It’s possible that we can increase numbers training at the Club from the end of June, but each sport’s National Governing Body must decide when their sport will reopen, and at what pace, so we must await Athletics Ireland’s plans, which will hopefully be announced this week. In the meantime, the current restriction of groups of 15 shall continue to apply.

No indication was given as to when the 500 limit might be increased but the Taoiseach said that no event of 5,000 or more would be permitted before the end of September. It is possible that 500 might increase to 5,000 in phases between July and September, but we’ll have to wait and see. The 500 limit is important, because last week we said that among the provisional National T&F fixtures planned for August was one for juveniles from under 14 to under 19 but an important caveat was that all dates were contingent on meeting Government guidelines. In light of the restriction of 500 on outdoor numbers, Athletics Ireland has decided not to include National finals for u/14 to u/16. This is disappointing news, but it’s understandable, as these are the age groups that will generate the greatest number of entrants, and they are always accompanied by many more parents and possibly siblings and other family members than the older age groups, so the limit of 500 might be impossible to comply with.

Since Clubs have been allowed to reopen, we’ve successfully embraced the new “normal”. We’ve increased from groups of 4 to groups of 15, and fully complied with the protocols set by Athletics Ireland including appointment of a Covid-19 Compliance Officer, preparation of risk assessments, a pre-booking system, an attendance recording system when arriving at the Club, and carefully monitoring social distancing, hygiene and sneeze and cough etiquette. Therefore, we believe we’re well placed to increase activity at the Club, if we’re given the go ahead by Athletics Ireland.