LOCKDOWN – No. 2

Lockdown is back and the Government rules/guidelines are have closed pools and I am sorry to say, we have had to close in line with Government instructions.

With the current length of lockdown, the time needed to get the pool up and running again, and the Christmas closure that the club would normally take, it will be January before we return if allowed.

Can we ask you to stop your December payments and any November payment still outstanding please – we will hold the money for those who have already kindly paid their November fees, using it for the first month when we return.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you who returned to swimming with us, who worked with us and the Covid measures we put in place for everyone’s safety, making it possible for us to have some level of swimming. We feel we did things as best as we could but also acknowledge that one or two things could possibly be done differently when we return in 2021. We must also say ‘sorry’ to our small pool swimmers, unfortunately the Leisure Centre’s restrictions meant that we were unable to offer you a return to swimming, something I know many of you were keen to do – if we could have done it we would have!

The club is 10 years old in January and we want to return big and strong but we need the support of parents and others to do so, we need people to join our Management Team and the poolside team as teachers and coaches. We are all volunteers at the club and like everyone Covid has affected us, in some cases more severe than others, with colleagues shielding vulnerable family members and several self-isolating due to track & trace. The pandemic has changed all our lives and along with the issues that occur in normal life some of the team have not been able to return to the club and others feel they will have to step down in the New Year. Please helps us secure a future for the club and become involved.

If you have any questions or feel you can become involved and join us, please email via the Contacts page.

Please stay safe and healthy

Nigel Stevenson

Chair – GDSC

COVID 19

We have been advised this evening that two members have received a positive test result for Covid 19 over the weekend.

As per our Covid procedures, those directly affected are being contacted and advised to self-isolate in line with Government guidelines.

As a result of this situation, for the safety of everyone, I have taken the decision to close the club as of now for this week – no swimming tonight (Monday), Tuesday or Wednesday.

We will publish more information on the club closure due to the imposed lockdown over the next day or so.

LOCKDOWN

Just a quick post to confirm that we are continuing to swim up to the lockdown – Wednesday will be our last session.

We will put more information out on Facebook and the website later in the week

Thanks GDSC Management Team

REMINDER – SOCIAL DISTANCING

Following on from yesterday’s posting on wearing face masks, we must remind you that the social distancing rules apply to both parents and kids when waiting outside inline to come into swimming – the rules also apply when in the LC.

We also remind you that you are to arrive only 5 minutes before your session start time.

The LC have reminded us of this following a complaint. If we do not comply, we could risk losing use of the facility.

Whilst we understand some may not agree with the rules, we remind you that you agreed to comply by returning to swimming.

Please social distance and wear masks for everyone’s benefit.

GDSC Management Team

FACE MASKS

The Leisure Centre are encouraging anyone entering the building to wear a face mask or suitable covering when not taking part in an activity, something the club support – can we ask that you do this if you enter the building and also stay to spectate at any time.

GDSC Management Team

WE’RE BACK …

We are back in the water!

OK so not everyone is yet but we are working on it with our phased approach – below is more info on what’s been going on and how we are bring you back to the pool.

Return to Swim

Covid 19 has been, and continues to be very difficult for all of us, as a club we have been working on returning to the pool since mid-June, writing risk assessments, procedures, and juggling plans around to give us best use of the pool under the new restrictions, despite not having any indication of a return date at that time.

In several of the club’s website and FB posts reference has been made to a ‘phased start’, possibly without enough detail behind it.

Working with the Leisure Centre and within Swim England guidelines we have adopted a 3 phased start plan. This gives us a gradual return of swimmers so they, and the GD staff can understand the safety measures in place around the facility, the key points of our procedures around the pool and the new way of swimming in wide lanes etc. whilst still socially distancing in the water etc.

We appreciate that this approach takes time which may not suit everyone, but to bring you all back at one time is not possible with the social distancing rules we have in place and numbers in the pool being reduced by current guidelines. Therefore, how we put groups into the water had to be managed differently to what was to the old ‘normal’.

This aspect of the Covid 19 measures has possibly been the hardest and it took some time to arrive at a plan that was deemed to be fair to the majority of our swimmers, once we had been given the green light by the LC to return.

At the start of the month we had trial sessions to confirm our risk assessments, procedures and swim plans are effective, and these went very well which allowed us to implement Phase 1.

Phase 1 is Sharks & Piranhas, they started this last week and again sessions went well, and they will continue through next week.

Subject to no issues this week, and no change to the Swim England and Government guidelines, the plan is to implement Phase 2 and welcome back Swordfish, Penguins 3 & 4 and Masters during w/c 20th September. Again, signed documents and payment arrangements must be in place before swimmers are allowed back into the water.

Phase 3 – Penguins 1 & 2 with Goldfish are targeted to return during w/c 4th October subject to current guidelines remaining in place, packs were sent out 10th September. All signed documents must be returned and bank payments set-up by 22nd September to allow you to swim.

Sadly, under current Leisure Centre guidelines we are not able to offer a start date for the small pool return for our Tadpole swimmers

Can I personally thank our swim families for your patience and understanding during these difficult times – we have to work in a way we believe best for all, we believe the measures we have put in place and the phased return approach allows us to minimise any risk to swimmers, our staff and the LC staff.

From worrying about vulnerable people within the family, to kids going back to school, people on furlough or sadly losing their jobs, etc. it is a difficult time for all of us but hopefully with the plan we have in place we can all come together and start to see some normality in the world of swimming.

Nigel Stevenson & The GD Management Team.