Here's the state of play wherever you are

The Omicron variant is sweeping the United Kingdom and government’s are beginning to reimpose coronavirus restrictions.

We’ve set out the rules for England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland as they stand and what they mean for your club…

England

Updated: December 22

Prime minister Boris Johnson has said there will be no new Covid restrictions before Christmas. But he has not ruled out any further measures following that in the face of the spread of Omicron.

Previously, on December 10, England Golf said golf clubs must “consider the layout of their facilities, especially their clubhouses” when applying rules on Covid-19 restrictions regarding mask wearing and working from home.

Scotland

Updated: December 22

New guidance documents have been updated by the PGA following First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s update to the Scottish Parliament on December 21. They can be read and downloaded by visiting Scottish Golf’s website.

The governing body say ‘enhanced measures’ have been put in place for up to three weeks from December 26 for ‘indoor contact sports for adults’ and ‘large scale events’ and from December 27 for areas including hospitality.

They include:

  • All indoor hospitality venues should reintroduce physical distancing (1m) between groups (maximum 3 households per group) as well as table service in settings where alcohol is served. 
  • Large spectator and participation events can take place if 1m physical distancing measures are put in places and attendances limited to: indoors, 100 standing and 200 seated; outdoors, 500 standing and 500 seated.
  • For that three-week period, the Scottish Government has also advised that people “stay at home as much as possible, keep contacts to a minimum; and keep New Year gatherings as small as your family circumstances allow”.

Wales

Updated: December 22

The First Minister, Mark Drakeford, set out new measures on December 22 that will come into effect on Boxing Day. They will bring back Alert Level 2 restrictions in some instances.

Two metre social distancing will once again be required in all public places and licensed premises, which will include golf clubs, will have to offer table service only, with face masks to be worn at all times in hospitality settings except when seated. Contact tracing details must also be collected once again.

A maximum of six people can meet in public places and large events “will not be allowed indoors or outdoors. The maximum number of people who can gather at an indoor event will be 30 and 50 outdoors”.

Measures announced in the previous week for workplaces and retail will also come into force from December 26.

For more on the restrictions, click here.

Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland

Updated: December 22

Golf Ireland’s Golf and Living with Covid-19 has been in place since July 23 and, in the Republic, Sport Ireland’s Return to Sport Guidance, issued on October 19, also remains in force and you can read it here.

The use of face coverings is required in all indoor settings accessible to the public across Northern Ireland.

This includes shops, shopping centres, public, private and school transport services, taxis, airplanes, public transport stations and airports, banks, churches, cinemas, and some government offices, and golf clubs.

In the Republic, hospitality and cultural venues – including pubs and restaurants – must now close by 8pm in measures that will remain in place until January 30 at the earliest. 

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