Dear Members and Volunteers,
As you will have been doing, we have been monitoring Government and RYA advice on measures we should all take to address the threats of COVID-19/Coronovirus. Whilst the advice is subject to frequent changes we thought that we should give you an overview of how the current (17 March) COVID-19 situation will affect the Charity’s ability to fulfil its aims and how the Trustees and Management Team propose to get as much as we can out of the season. It goes without saying that our prime objective is the safety of our sailors and volunteers, particularly as so many of us fall into the ‘Vulnerable’ category.
1. Meetings will be conducted wherever possible by video conferencing or email, but we should not be afraid to discuss matters in the open air with good distances between us.
2. The Winter Maintenance has progressed extremely well and can be completed piecemeal by individuals or pairs at their own risk. It is for each individual to make their own decision on whether to participate and the precautions they should take. If it doesn’t get completed, we will do it when the threat lifts.
3. Pre-season and Induction training will be reviewed constantly until shortly before the current dates and participants advised accordingly. If we cannot carry out the training on time, there will have to be a delay in the season until it is complete.
4. When, or whether the season starts will also be kept under constant review. Unfortunately, the way we operate needs close, personal contact and requires a good deal of certainty that the virus is no longer present.
5. Naturally, social gatherings would be irresponsible; We are cancelling the Annual Dinner and the Annual General Meeting. Instead email members will receive an email with the items needing agreement. We will not take forward any matters which generate significant disagreement. This process has been agreed by the Charities Commission. As part of the process, the Annual Accounts for 2018/9 will be placed on the website, once they are audited and approved.
I know that this situation is not what you would want to hear, but our safety has to come first and we have to protect the Charity by following guidelines, unless we can provide a cast-iron case against them. Please look after yourselves by following all the recommendations and thinking about the consequences of your actions and I hope to see you on the water once this dreadful virus has been beaten.
Neil Strevens Chairman of Trustees
Ian Wakeling Principle