Returning to Business

The last few months have been extremely difficult for many of our members. Throughout this period, Chris and the rest of the SAPCA team have worked extremely hard to help get our industry back up and running. They have provided and shared guidance on how to make sites safe and worked with partners to help convince the government that opening up the construction industry would be the sensible thing to do. The team has also worked tirelessly to bring many of SAPCA’s services online – and to find ways of delivering them in alternative ways.

We will continue to utilise our channels into government and Sport England, as well as other major stakeholders, to ensure that SAPCA’s voice is heard. As always, it’s really important that you, our members, let us know of any issues you’ve encountered and which you think should be raised at the top levels of government.

We are also partnering with a think tank to help monitor the confidence levels across the sports sector – and it would be great if SAPCA members could join the panel of companies involved in an economic confidence survey tracker. It would be useful to see some of our members’ experiences included in the national survey, as the results will be fed directly to the government.

The SAPCA team has also used the time during the lockdown to complete a number of tasks which have been in the pipeline for a while. In May, we published the new Code of Practice for the Design Specification and Testing of Bases for Outdoor Synthetic Sports Areas, which is now available on the SAPCA website.

New Methods of Delivery

For some time (prior to the lockdown), we had been hearing how members were increasingly busy and how it was difficult for many of them to find the time to attend day-long courses or events. Webinars were – even before the COVID-19 lockdown – identified as one of the potential solutions to the issue.

Now, as the pandemic has forced us all to experiment with new technology and help us find ways of working remotely, we have discovered that online and web-based services do indeed work very well. I’m sure that, as we slowly emerge from the pandemic, we can further explore the opportunities that these “new ways of working” will offer SAPCA.

Speaking of events, we are currently drawing up plans for a programme of events to run over the next year. These are all, obviously, subject to change and could eventually be delivered in a different way – owing to government guidance – but we do feel that, now more than ever, we need to be working together across the industry to rebuild and recover.

As ever, we will be trying our hardest to continue to provide a comprehensive selection of services, but we’d like to hear from members what more SAPCA can do to enable us all to come out of this crisis in a stronger position. Please feel free to get in touch with me or Chris on any matter – and at any time.

I do hope we’ll be able to meet again soon in person, perhaps at a SAPCA event – but in the meantime, it’s more likely to be over a webcam or Zoom call!

About Andy Reed

SAPCA Chairman until the end of 2020.