Tier 4 restrictions and sport – what does it mean for England?

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Parts of England have been placed under Tier 4 restrictions (as of 20 December) and the decision will have an immediate effect on grassroots sport operations.

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The government has now confirmed that people can continue to undertake unlimited exercise alone in public outdoor places – such as parks, the countryside, public gardens and outdoor sports facilities. People can also exercise together with their household, support bubble, or one other person not connected to their household or bubble.

Outdoor sports facilities are allowed to remain open and can be used by individual households, bubbles or two people from different households. This applies to outdoor sports courts, outdoor gyms, golf courses, outdoor swimming pools, archery/driving/shooting ranges, riding centres and playgrounds.

In short, this means that, while all outdoor adult teams sports are banned, games of tennis or golf can still take place between two individuals from different households.

Organised outdoor sport for under-18s (including those who were under 18 on 31 August 2020) and disabled people is also allowed.

Indoor sport is allowed for under-18s for educational purposes or to facilitate childcare that enables parents or carers to work, seek work or take part in education. Adult sport, however, can’t take place indoors under any circumstances and gyms and swimming pools have been forced to close.

Tier 4 also places severe restrictions on other areas of everyday life. For the full list of “dos and don’ts” click on the following link for the latest guidance: www.gov.uk/guidance/tier-4-stay-at-home.