We have received a number of questions surrounding in particular the use of Driving Ranges.
Today England Golf and the wider golf industry have published further guidance on both driving ranges and club fitting, in which they indicate the Government is unlikely to provide specific guidance on both aspects. England Golf have therefore considered all available Government advice and have reached the following conclusions.
The UK Government have issued guidelines for providers of outdoor facilities on the phased return of sport and recreation in England. These guidelines specifically mention the re-opening of outdoor sports facilities. Driving ranges have been constructed in a variety of different ways, with varying features of indoor and outdoor facilities, making it impossible to provide a blanket response as to whether they can or cannot open.
In addition, driving ranges contain a number of hard surfaces and remain a high risk area for the spread of COVID-19. Because of this risk and the variable nature of their construction, we are not able to confirm if driving ranges are allowed to open.
If you are considering opening your driving range, you should carry out a comprehensive risk assessment considering current Government advice.
Full details of the Guidance for providers of outdoor facilities on the phased return of sport and recreation can be found here.
Like coaching, it is advised that club fitting can commence outside. However you must be able to complete the entirety of the activity under social distancing and infection control measures. One again, it is recommended that PGA professionals complete a comprehensive risk assessment to ensure maximum safety.
When considering whether to custom fit golf clubs at your facility, the following points need to be followed:
If you have any doubts around operating a club fitting service at your facility or opening a driving range, it is recommended contact be made with your local Environmental Health and Trading Standards office who will be able to provide further advice.