The below information was correct as of Wednesday 24th June 2020:
Whilst, it would be within the current government and England Athletics guidelines to allow small groups to begin to meet up officially and we are beginning to see other local clubs and groups restarting organised activities, we have made the decision that, at present it would not be appropriate to restart our weekly club sessions.
We are keen to be as open and transparent as we possibly can be and explain the thought that has gone in to making this decision and the complex factors that have been considered.
Following consultation with our volunteer Run Leaders and the clubs committee, we agreed that restarting club sessions at the present time would place an undue pressure and burden on our volunteers to facilitate sessions. Run Leaders may still have their own anxieties about meeting in groups and it would be highly likely that our offering, which we have always prided ourselves on being of a consistently high standard, would become fragmented and inconsistent.
The requirement to limit the numbers in each group would require some form of reservation or booking of places, which brings with it its own complexities, and would inevitably result in those members who are already confident and have remained physically active during the enforced lockdown with additional opportunities to be active, at the expense of those who are in more need of support and encouragement.
As well as the practical difficulties of facilitating groups of 6 people (all exercising social distancing) we also need to carefully consider the reputation of Ramsbottom Running Club and it just doesn’t feel quite right for us to be encouraging numerous groups to pound the pavements and add to the crowds in the busy parks and on the trails at the present moment.
Instead we agreed that we will support our members, and the wider community by:
- continuing to offer our weekly and monthly virtual running challenges and our weekly Tuesday evening social calls
- proactively reaching out to those members who we feel would greatly benefit from additional support with the aim of understanding how we can best support them.
- exploring ways of creating a buddying system to support those who would benefit from someone to walk or run with.
- advancing plans to host an online ‘Couch to 5k’ programme for those who need support getting started or restarted with being physically active.