Some driving ranges in England are still not allowed to open

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir May 20, 2020 09:51

England Golf has been advised that the UK government is ‘unlikely to provide specific guidance on club fitting and driving ranges’ and has therefore developed its own guidance for English golf clubs.

‘We have considered all available government advice and have reached the following conclusions,’ is says in a statement, which concludes that some driving ranges can not open, but club fitting can take place provided it is outdoors.

‘Like coaching, it is advised that club fitting can commence outside,’ the statement reads.

‘However you must be able to complete the entirety of the activity under social distancing and infection control measures. ┬áIt is recommended that PGA professionals complete a comprehensive risk assessment to ensure maximum safety.’

When considering whether to custom fit golf clubs at your facility, the following points need to be followed by English golf clubs:

  • Carry out a comprehensive risk assessment considering current government advice.
  • All club fitting should take place outdoors and social distancing must be adhered to.
  • Consideration needs to be given to the strict hygiene measures relating to the sharing of equipment.

The 3Hammers driving range in Wolverhampton has reopened, with social distancing measures in place. Image from Facebook

The situation is more complicated with driving ranges, as many have been constructed in different ways.

‘The UK government have issued guidelines for providers of outdoor facilities on the phased return of sport and recreation in England,’ says England Golf.

‘These guidelines specifically mention the reopening of outdoor sports facilities. Driving ranges have been constructed in a variety of different ways, with varying features of indoor and outdoor facilities, making it impossible to provide a blanket response as to whether they can or cannot open.

‘In addition, driving ranges contain a number of hard surfaces and remain a high risk area for the spread of COVID-19. Because of this risk and the variable nature of their construction, we are not able to confirm if driving ranges are allowed to open.

‘If you are considering opening your driving range, you should carry out a comprehensive risk assessment considering current government advice.’

Full details of the guidance for providers of outdoor facilities on the phased return of sport and recreation can be found here.

‘If you have any doubts around operating a club fitting service at your facility or opening a driving range, we recommend getting in touch with your local environmental health and trading standards office who will be able to provide further advice,’ concludes the statement.

 

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir May 20, 2020 09:51
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