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COVID-19 Update: Guidance for Paddlesport Centres and Hire Providers

14 May 2020


Further to the advice issued by British Canoeing on 12 May 2020 about a return to paddling and new guidance released by the Government on 13 May, we are pleased to share additional guidance with paddlesport centres and hire providers in England.

This confirms that facilities associated with outdoor sports have been permitted to reopen from 13 May, subject to them being ready to do so safely.

This guidance is presented within the following three documents issued by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport on 13 May 2020.

This guidance relates only to centres and hire providers in England, as policy and guidance in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland is subject to the devolved governments and their respective national governing bodies.


Additional considerations for centres and hire providers

This guidance emphasises that this is not a return to normal operations. Before re-opening its facilities, centres and hire providers are required to put in place plans and COVID-19 risk assessments to reduce the risk of transmission of coronavirus.

These steps are outlined within the government 
guidance for providers of outdoor facilities

In addition to the government’s guidance, British Canoeing also invites centres and hire providers to consider the following governing body guidance; 

General guidance is provided within 
British Canoeing - A return to paddling in England 

Led, coached, or guided activity may now take place on a 1:1 basis with social distancing. Anyone leading a 1:1 activity should ensure appropriate safety frameworks are in place, that delivery is in safe and familiar environments and that the paddler is self-sufficient and no equipment is shared. 

Coaching under 18s and adults at risk on a 1:1 basis should be avoided, as stated within British Canoeing’s safeguarding policy. We recognise this therefore prevents under 18s and adults at risk from accessing face to face coaching at the moment due to the Government’s current guidance relating to social gatherings. 

We are working with the Child Protection in Sport Unit of the NSPCC and seeking further advice from the Government. We will provide further guidance in this area as soon as we can. Please note that this statement does not preclude under 18s from paddling with a parent/carer, friend, or family member whilst abiding by Government guidelines.

For more information on coached activity, please refer to our guidance for paddlesport coaches and leaders

If you have any questions about the guidance please don’t hesitate to contact us by using this comment form.

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