COVID-19 Return to Play Statement
06 December 2020
Further to recent developments concerning COVID-19 guidelines, the BRHA National Executive Committee is providing clubs across all six regions with an update on our current position and the plan moving forward.
BRHA Limited is the acting governing body for all six BRHA regions, namely North Wales, North West, South, South West, West, and Yorkshire. As you know, the BRHA National Exec has been working closely with the DCMS over the past several months and pushing our sport forward where it is safe to do so.
Version 4 of our return to play policy has been reviewed and approved by the DCMS, and the arrangement is that we move forward in a streamlined fashion with other roller organisations, so the sport is moving forward as one and allows for easier governance. To us, this makes a lot of sense and we, of course, will do what we can to support progress so long as the safety of our members and volunteers is not compromised.
This past week as lockdown 2.0 concluded, the BRHA National Exec held several meetings regarding our position as an organisation and what we believe is the right approach to take the next step. There is and will always be the added complication of ever-changing government guidelines that is simply out of our control; however, we feel it necessary to demonstrate to our valued members that we are moving forward.
To this end, we are pleased to announce that the BRHA National Exec has approved the return to competitive play and plan to run pilot games where we execute our stringent game day policies and make the necessary tweaks prior to rolling out nationally. The safe and controlled return to competitive play is of utmost importance and this process will not be rushed. As a country and sport, we have had to endure unprecedented times that has tested each and every one of us at all levels, and it appears we are starting to see light at the end of the tunnel. Now is not the time to relax and compromise our safety. Each region will be required to adopt national policies and procedures, so that we continue to manage the situation, with a platform to provide feedback so every region learns from the other.
The pilot games will take place effective 01 January 2021 and the regional heads will contact all member clubs to commence a consultation period in due course. It is crucial that our members have the opportunity to input into our wider plan and this will be achieved through the hierarchical structure in place from parent and player up to the BRHA National Exec. Our members must feel safe and involved at all times and this is where we need you more than ever.
At the time of writing, the BRHA is at the following phases: -
· Seniors @ RTP Phase 2:
o Tier 1: Teams are allowed to train in bubbles of six up to a maximum of two bubbles (12 individuals in total). This includes netminders but excludes coaching staff as long as they maintain social distance and wear a suitable face covering.
o Tier 2: Players can train with up to 12 players on the rink with no interaction other than those of the same household or support bubble. While training is allowed, you must continue to socially distance on-and-off the rink, and the mixing of players is strictly prohibited.
o Tier 3: Skating rinks are not allowed to open while in tier 3.
· Juniors @ RTP Phase 3:
o All Tiers: Teams are allowed to train in accordance with the participant numbers and guidance stated in the BRHA’s RTP v4 policy. Training is permitted for players aged 17 and under across all tiers.
o Tier 3: Skating rinks are not allowed to open while in tier 3.
NB: As ever, please keep a very close eye on the ever-changing landscape and ensure your club is adhering to the latest guidelines.
Effective 01 January 2021:
· Competitive play is allowed within the confines of the guidance;
o Training @ Phase 3 (enhanced training): no change in phase – stringent measures required while training;
o Games @ Phase 5 (behind closed doors): Junior teams with players aged 17 and under are permitted to participate in organised games. Please ensure cross-tier travel is kept to a minimum and only when essential.
o NB: Phase 4 and phase 6 are the maximum phases for training and games respectively. The BRHA does not operate sequential phases as is the case with some other organisations, as this allows us to control all playing environments independently.
o Training @ Phase 2: continued until such time the guidance for players aged 18 years and over is updated;
o Games: under the current guidance, game play environments are not allowed for players aged 18 years and over.
As BRHA Limited has only recently taken ownership of the national organisation from Inline UK, it is an acting governing body and, currently, not recognised by Sports England. The process to become recognised by Sports England is quite lengthily and will take time. This is why the DCMS are unable to list BRHA as an approved body on the website; although, our policy has been reviewed and approved. A headed letter has been requested so that this can be used for reference of our dialogue and agreement with the DCMS. We will remain fully transparent throughout this process and encourage any questions you may have.
The respective regional representatives will be reaching out in due course; however, if you have any questions or need further clarification in the meantime, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please continue to stay safe and we thank you once again for your continued support,
The BRHA National Executive Committee.
As we head in to the weekend, we want to share the latest on where we are following the Government’s shift in guidance earlier this week.
The DCMS has reviewed and approved version 3 of our RTP, subject to updating it to the revised guidance. V3 was sent prior before the announcement so we will get to work and push this through ASAP.
They have confirmed junior hockey (17 and under) can continue under the new guidance, and we will be working to get the season started as soon as is practical. As we want to return under the safest possible conditions, games will be played behind closed doors. BRHA South has been working tirelessly on a Covid-secure facility plan that has also been reviewed by the DCMS. This region will be the pilot and the plan tweaked where necessary before rolling out to other regions. It is a process that needs to be tried and tested, and cannot be rushed so we thank you for your understanding.
Furthermore, we have confirmation that senior players (18+) are able to form training bubbles on the rink with the strict understanding that they do no mix. This allows senior teams to form two bubbles of six. The RTP will be updated and published early next week so that senior teams have a maximum of 12 (2 x 6) at any one time, and this must include coaches and other participants registered to the team. We will be working with the regional heads and the facilities to introduce measures to partition the rink in two. Competitive games are suspended until further notice. No individuals will be authorised to wait on the bench or around the rink, and spectators will be prohibited on the basis that safeguarding is not compromised.
We hope this provides some reassurance as we head in to the weekend. It is an unprecedented time and we are constantly having to react and adapt. The BRHA National Exec is doing everything in our power to push on but we must all remain mindful of the times we are in. Safety must not be compromised.
A further update will be posted in the coming days once we release the new version of the RTP and require teams to update their RTP Acceptance and Risk Assessment forms.
Many thanks for your continued patience and support,
Director & General Secretary
On behalf of the BRHA National Executive Committee
Here is your opportunity to get involved in the brand new BRHA All Stars initiative, which is launching for the 2020/21 season. BRHA South, North West, and Yorkshire, come together as we set out to scout the elite players across all regions that will represent the BRHA domestically as well as on the International stage.
We are looking for candidates to fill the roles of Manager, Coach & Assistant Coach to lead the U12, U14, and U16 teams, all supported by the BRHA National Executive Committee.
In order to be considered, we are asking for individuals interested in these positions to submit their Resume online: http://allstars.brha.co.uk. The closing date is 30th September 2020 with the successful candidates notified no later than 31st October 2020.
The successful coaching and management teams will work together on strategy and start planning for the BRHA All Stars Challenge. This is a 'trial by tournament' event that is being held at our BRHA West & North Wales rink in Market Drayton on 12th & 13th December 2020. Each region will take a team of interested players per age group to the event where they will compete against the other two regions (3 teams per age group, 9 in total at the event).
The objectives of the Tournament are primarily to re-enforce the Association’s desire to put the focus on the future of our sport with the younger players, to help it grow and provide a sustainable route for development.
The successful team will be scouted based on their all-round performance including attitude on and off the rink, and ability. Each team will be formed of 8 players and 2 goalies, with the successful players being informed in early January.
Training sessions will be held on the following dates in preparation for Sparta 2021!
- 6th February @ Bordon Roller Rink, 12:00 - 16:30
- 6th March @ Atherton Roller Rink, 12:00 - 16:30
Sparta is scheduled for 31st March - 4th April 2021, in Igualada, near Barcelona.
Please be aware that you may only be considered if you can commit to ALL aspects of the ALL STARS Programme (challenge event, training & Sparta). You must be registered in the BRHA as either a Player, Manager or Coach (Managers & Coaches must be DBS Registered - DBS will be arranged if required).
Sparta age group classification (this aligns to the BRHA):
- Under 13 (Born on or after 1/1/08)
- Under 15 (Born on or after 1/1/06)
- Under 17 (Born on or after 1/1/04)
COACHES & MANAGERS -- APPLY HERE BEFORE 30 SEPTEMBER: http://allstars.brha.co.uk
Download the full advert here (PDF): https://drive.google.com/open?id=1MU2oIPvJKPNnQdMAqA4yS-eCvuXIP65J