Country sports resume under phase 1 of recovery plan

Following the announcement 18th May 2020 by the First and Deputy First Minister, Countryside Alliance Ireland welcome the easing of restrictions and that shooting, equestrian and other country sports activities may now take place.

What does this mean for country sports enthusiasts in Northern Ireland?

You can an activity in a group of up to six people with whom you do not share a household, but you must maintain social distancing and all covid hygiene measures.

You are permitted to travel to a suitable outdoor location.

There is no restriction on the distance you are allowed to travel.

 

Shooting

Live quarry, clay and target shooting can resume as long as social distancing is adhered to and equipment is not shared unless from the same household. As syndicates prepare for the arrival of birds and carrying out work parties a risk assessment should be carried out to ensure government advice is followed.

Please implement the following:

  • Wash you hands with soap and water before you set off.
  • Keep at least 2 metres away from all other people and if possible
  • Take extra care to respect the health and safety of land owners. Respect signage. Follow all reasonable requests to avoid sensitive areas.
  • Leave gates as you find them, where there is no livestock. Gates may have been left open to avoid contact.
  • If you do need to open and close gates, wear gloves to minimise risk of you transmitting or picking up COVID 19.
  • Wash your hands on return, regardless of whether you’ve worn gloves. Don’t forget to wash your gloves.
  • With an increase in the number of people accessing outdoor areas for places to exercise or walk dogs etc, remain aware of the needs of fellow users of open spaces.
  • Each person is responsible for acting in an appropriate manner within the guidelines.

Clubs may also open to club members only for practice. Clubs must strictly adhere to the government guide lines with a maximum of 6 people and social distancing rules apply. No share of equipment should take place outside of you household. Club houses must also remain closed. Again A risk assessment should be carried out prior to opening ensuring government advice is followed.

Clubs should also be consider the following.

  • Providing hand washing facilities.
  • Members should avoid touching club equipment, where this is not possible hand sanitiser, gloves or other appropriate PPE should be provided.
  • Members pre-booking time slots in advance to control numbers on the ground.
  • Discourage those who wish to socialise to spectate from attending, only those taking part should be on site.
  • One-way system to control the flow of members around the site.
  • Were payment is required clubs should consider contactless forms of payment.

Equine

  • Wash your hands with soap and water before you set off.
  • Keep at least 2 metres away from all other people and if possible, try to avoid busy times on popular paths or places.
  • Take extra care to respect the health and safety of land owners. Respect signage. Follow all reasonable requests to avoid sensitive areas.
  • Think carefully about your route. Can you avoid gates to minimise risk to you and others when touching surfaces?
  • Leave gates as you find them, where there is no livestock. Gates may have been left open to avoid contact.
  • If you do need to open and close gates, wear gloves to minimise risk of you transmitting or picking up CV. Wash your gloves between rides.
  • Wash your hands on return, regardless of whether you’ve worn gloves. Wash your gloves between each ride off your own property.
  • Please be courteous at all times.
  • With an increase in the number of people accessing outdoor areas for places to exercise, remain aware of the needs of fellow users of open spaces and places where you are allowed to ride or carriage-drive.
  • Ensure you check in your local area before setting off whether access to places you used to ride are open such as beaches and forests.
  • Each person is responsible for acting in an appropriate manner within the guidelines applicable to where you are living and where you keep or exercise your horse.

Clubs may also open to club members only for practice. Clubs must strictly adhere to the government guide lines with a maximum of 6 people and social distancing rules apply. No share of equipment should take place outside of you household. Club houses must also remain closed. Again A risk assessment should be carried out prior to opening ensuring government advice is followed.

Equestrian clubs should also be consider the following.

  • Providing hand washing facilities.
  • Members should avoid touching club equipment, where this is not possible hand sanitiser, gloves or other appropriate PPE should be provided.
  • Members pre-booking time slots in advance to control numbers on the ground.
  • Discourage those who wish to socialise to spectate from attending, only those taking part should be on site.
  • One-way system to control the flow of members around the site.
  • Were payment is required clubs should consider contactless forms of payment.
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