Rugby activity includes club training, league and cup matches plus rugby education courses from 17 March until 14 April subject to continued review.
The decision has been taken following government advice in the interests of players, coaches, referees, volunteers, supporters and the wider rugby union community.
Where possible, players at all levels are encouraged to maintain their own personal fitness and keep active during this time, while following government guidelines about safe distance and safe exercise environments.
The RFU will continue to review and monitor government advice and will provide detailed updates on the impact to the season in the coming weeks.
CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) UPDATE: 18 MARCH
We would like to thank everyone for their great efforts in implementing the changes that were required following our most recent announcement on Covid-19, which resulted in all rugby activity in England being suspended. We now want to provide you with the latest updates following the advice given by the government.
We continue to review the implications of the government’s advice on the wider aspects of the community game. There are still a number of other matters to be resolved and we will provide further information regularly through this communication, unless there is an urgent need to do otherwise.
CANCELLATION OF FORTHCOMIMG ACTIVITIES
The following activities have been cancelled with immediate effect:
The Adult Male Future Competition Structure consultation sessions due to take place between Monday 23 March to Tuesday 14 April – all those booked on these sessions will be contacted. The aim is to ensure a decision on future structures is taken by the Friday 12 June Council meeting, a new plan for consultations will be communicated in due course.
The Growing the Female Game regional conferences due to take place between Monday 23 March to Sunday 17 May – we will contact all registered participants over the course of this week.
All England Rugby training courses – scheduled to start between Tuesday 17 March to Thursday 30 April – we will contact participants already booked on courses, who will be refunded. We will process refunds as soon as possible. However, we are currently experiencing high volumes of requests so please bear with us. A decision regarding courses due to start in May/June will be made based on guidance from Public Health England.
England Counties – in light of the recent advice against overseas travel, we have taken the decision to cancel the following England Counties tournaments:
• England Counties U18s home matches against Ireland – 14 to 18 April
• England Counties U20s tour to Georgia – 17 to 28 May
• England Seniors tour to Romania – 1 to 10 June.
The decision has been taken in the interests of players, coaches, medics and volunteers who lead these programmes.
All Rugby 365 bookings through to Tuesday 14 April – customers and host clubs have been contacted. Full refunds will be made in respect of all cancellations. Bookings from Wednesday 15 April onwards will be reviewed.
OTHER IMPORTANT UPDATES
In addition to the above cancellations, we would like to provide clarity regarding the following areas:
Support for clubs – we are investigating a range of options to provide support for clubs and hope to communicate more information next week. We are also in close contact with the government to get further details on how the changes announced by the Chancellor yesterday might benefit rugby clubs, e.g. business rates.
Adult competitions – we are currently looking into the implications on, and options for, the conclusion of our Adult Men’s and Adult Women’s competitions for this season. This review work is expected to take the next few weeks and a final position is unlikely to be clear until April.
Age Grade season and competitions – the regulated Age Grade season finishes for clubs, schools and colleges on Sunday 10 May. We are aware that the current suspension of all rugby until Tuesday 14 April impacts on some competitions, we are exploring options on this and any updated position will follow once available.
Further information will be made available if and when interim decisions are taken.
Rugby in schools and colleges – our advice for rugby is clear and means no rugby activity and/or competitions staged in the education sector by us or the Constituent Bodies. However, schools and colleges govern their own PE, curriculum and enrichment activity, therefore they should take guidance from their local education authority, governing body or academy trust. The lead national organisation for colleges sport (Association of Colleges Sport) have also suspended all their activities.
Rugby in universities – university rugby clubs are reminded that, as RFU members, their rugby is subject to the same current restrictions as all other community clubs. The lead national sports organisation in universities (British Universities and Colleges Sport) have also suspended all their activities and are in support of this approach.
Gyms – clubs should follow the government’s advice, i.e. restrict movement, avoid gatherings, etc. Decisions on whether to open or not are at the discretion of clubs and gym activity is not regarded as rugby activity.
Insurance – the policies arranged by us for registered clubs are public and employers’ liability (which protect you if you are sued by someone else for causing injury to them) and personal accident cover (which provides specific benefits to you if you suffer a catastrophic accidental injury whilst playing). Please click here for all the policy documents.
These policies do not provide cover in respect of the commercial impact of a pandemic like Coronavirus. If a club has a business/commercial/property policy it is possible that the business interruption section of that may provide some cover, depending on the policy wording. If you have a query regarding your business policy you should refer to your insurer or broker.
Tours – our advice and that of the government should be followed i.e. no incoming tours can play matches before 14 April (at the earliest) and outgoing tours will need to take account of government advice and / or their own insurance specifics.
Insurance cover for any cancellation of tours will be depend on your travel insurance and the specific details of your circumstances. You should check with your travel insurance provider. If you have arranged travel insurance via the Howden RFU tours scheme, please call 02392 419015 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We appreciate that we are in unprecedented times and we are here to provide support to our clubs and their communities where we can during this challenging period.