Return to volleyball: What happens next?
10th July 2020
On Thursday 9th July, the Government gave the green light for grassroots sports to return in England while also announcing that indoor sports facilities can re-open from 25th July.
For all disciplines of volleyball, it marked the most significant step back to normality since lockdown restrictions were introduced in March.
Volleyball England must now submit detailed safety plans to the Government before our sport can be allowed to restart. This will be done in consultation with our ‘Return to Volleyball’ working group, which is made up of representatives from volleyball, beach volleyball and sitting volleyball.
These plans will demonstrate potential mitigations, how we plan to operate and any adaptations that may be required to the sport. We need to get this planning right to keep everyone safe, so please bear with us as we develop separate information for the three disciplines.
Indoor facilities to re-open
In a further boost for volleyball, the Government outlined measures that will allow indoor sports facilities to reopen from 25th July. As the Government itself highlighted in the announcement, sports halls are vital to the return of play for volleyball.
This new guidance has been compiled with input from ukactive, the Sport and Recreation Alliance, Sport England and other sports bodies and includes advice on cleaning, social distancing, and protection for staff to help venues get back up and running safely.
Government and venue guidance will be complemented by our own on the return of indoor sport, and it must be followed in that order of importance. On this basis, we suggest that clubs reach out to their facility providers, to find out their position and any emerging guidance to keep everyone safe.
‘We can’t wait to welcome you back’
Sue Storey, Chief Executive of Volleyball England, said: “I know that volleyballers up and down the country would have been left jumping for joy at the Government’s announcement on the return of team sport and the re-opening of indoor facilities.
“We have long awaited this moment and I want to thank you all for your patience over these last few months. Shutting down the sport was a difficult decision we had to make, and it is worth remembering the important role we have all played in keeping the community safe. In returning, we now have an important role in supporting people’s physical and mental health.
“The Hub team will be busy over the next few days and weeks to ensure the tens of thousands of people who play, officiate and volunteer can safely return at the earliest opportunity.
“As we continue our return on a larger scale, we know that some clubs will face significant challenges and we urge them to reach out to us for help. Together we can ensure the sport’s recovery is stronger. We have pulled together during lockdown, now let’s work together to get our sport up and running safely.
“We have missed you all and can’t wait to welcome you back to the court!"
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