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Coronavirus (Covid-19) 12/03/2021
This page provides information as to how the coronavirus (Covid-19) and the latest government advice around it, relates to tennis activities in Britain and all those involved in delivering them, with separate guidelines in place for each of England, Scotland and Wales.
- England - updated grid of permitted activity from 29 March (updated 10 March)
- Scotland - updated grid for permitted outdoor tennis activity (updated 12 March)
- Wales - return of tennis activity from 13 March (updated 12 March)
- Channel Islands - latest guidance
England (updated 10 March)
Resumption of outdoor tennis activity from 29 March
Government Roadmap for easing of lockdown restrictions
The Government has today (22 February) published its roadmap for the gradual and staged easing of lockdown restrictions in England, made possible by the pace of the vaccination programme. Restrictions will be eased across all areas of England at the same time.
The announcement confirmed that:
- Outdoor tennis courts will be able to open from 29 March. This will mean recreational tennis will be able to resume, including singles and doubles social play, 1:1 coaching and formally organised activity for groups, including group coaching
- Indoor courts to remain closed until later in the roadmap
- Tennis in schools can resume from 8 March (see below)
UPDATED: Summary Grid - Permitted tennis activity from 29 March
We have produced a simple summary grid outlining what the Government's publication of the roadmap means for tennis activity from 29 March, and setting out the key relevant aspects for tennis in terms of how the roadmap will progress under each step, which can be downloaded via the link below.
This document will be updated as and when we receive confirmation of further detail from Government and Sport England. Where activity is listed as permitted, this may still be subject to additional restrictions and protocols – it is anticipated these will be broadly in line with previous protocols but venues, coaches, players and officials should refer to the LTA's full COVID-19 Secure detailed guidance once updated documents are republished (this may not be until w/c 22 March once full Government guidance is made available).
Please note, we have now further updated this grid since initial publication, confirming toilets will be permitted to open from 29 March, and providing details on the definition of organised group activity (Version 3 - published 10 March).
LTA response to roadmap
We are pleased that there is now a clear date for when outdoor tennis will be allowed to resume in England. We know sport has a key role in supporting the physical and mental health of the nation, so its return will give a boost to the whole country, and is very welcome.
Clearly tennis is a naturally socially-distanced and safe activity and so we would have liked restrictions to be lifted without delay and made the case for this. However we are now focussed on supporting venues, coaches, officials and players to prepare for the return of outdoor tennis on 29 March.
It is also important that indoor facilities can reopen as soon as it is safe for them to do so. Many of the country’s network of indoor tennis facilities have suffered real financial challenges so it is vital that we protect these community assets to avoid them closing permanently, and we are keen to work with Government on this.
The initial plans for the return of spectators to sports stadia are also welcome, and we will continue to work closely with Government ahead of the LTA’s summer grass court events. We will share more information with tennis fans in due course.
Tennis in schools
The Government’s roadmap for the easing of lockdown restrictions in England confirms that schools will reopen from 8 March, and that school sport and after-school clubs can resume from this date. As part of this, activities such as tennis that can help pupils to be physically active while encouraging physical distancing are encouraged.
The Department for Education has published guidance to support the resumption of physical activity in schools, and coaches, teachers and venues should be aware of the following points:
- Each school has the flexibility to decide how physical education, sport and physical activity will be provided
- Pupils should be kept in consistent groups, with equipment cleaned between use by individual groups
- Outdoor sports should be prioritised where possible, and large indoor spaces used where it is not
- External facilities can be used
- Competition between different schools should not take place until wider grassroots sport for under 18s is permitted
- Schools can work with external coaches, clubs and organisations for curricular and extra-curricular activities, but must be satisfied that it is safe to do so
Further details on the guidelines around provision of activity for after-school clubs will be provided shortly.
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