Dear Badminton Members,
It has been a long 18 months for our Sport, but I am happy to report that we finally have a return date for Badminton to return in full, including doubles play and competition.
On Tuesday, An Taoiseach, Micheál Martin, announced a roadmap outlining the easing of COVID-19 related restrictions across various sectors, including sport, over the coming weeks. Yesterday, I met with representatives from Sport Ireland to discuss the finer points of the roadmap related to indoor sport. I have detailed this information below (below signature). For our clubs and members in Northern Ireland, details of the regulations can be found here - http://www.sportni.net/return-to-sport/
Overall, we can take it from this that Badminton will recommence in full for our members in the Republic of Ireland from September 20th. The Staff of Badminton Ireland is working hard with Sport Ireland and the Branches to develop a new set of Protocols for both club and competition play. We hope to issue these protocols next week and host webinars to assist clubs in their return.
In my last letter to you all, I highlighted that we would be launching the #ThisIsBadminton campaign. We have delayed that launch until next week to coincide with Sport Irelands promotional campaign. I would strongly encourage all members to engage with this campaign over the coming months.
I would ask for your continued patience and ongoing compliance with the current restrictions. Please visit the Badminton Ireland website and our social media platforms to stay up to date.
Please read below my signature for full details.
ROI Members - Reframing the challenge
September 6th 2021
- For indoor sporting events, spectators should be fully seated.
- Organisers should demonstrate a full understanding of and adherence to best practice protective measures, which should continue to apply, within these capacity limits and have COVID plans for events
September 20th 2021
From September 20th, the following apply to competitive sports training, competition and events.
- Capacity limits refer to the number of participants.
- Spectator attendance remains in line with the capacities outlined above.
October 22nd 2021
Based on the criteria of at or close to 90% of people 16 or over being fully vaccinated in the coming weeks, and having regard to the incidence and behaviour of the disease at that time, the Government plan to remove further statutory restrictions in respect of events and activities from 22nd of October.
Some of the following key measures will be removed;
- Formal requirements/mandates for physical distancing
- Limits on numbers at outdoor events and engaging in sporting activities outdoors
- Restrictions on indoor sports activities and other indoor leisure/community activities
- Certification of immunity or testing as a prerequisite for access to, or engagement in, any activities or events (with exception of international travel)
Overall, we can take it from this that Indoor Sport is not likely to return until September, but under different guidelines to the indoor dining. I will be attending another meeting with the Federation of Irish Sport and Sport Ireland to express our disappointment at the continued restrictions of our Sport and seek assurances that our Sport can reopen in September. As a valued member of Badminton Ireland, you have not been able to participate in the Sport in any meaningful way in over a year. It is my hope that this will come to an end in the coming weeks and the coming season can commence unrestricted.