Following the updated guidance issued by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport on Wednesday of this week which was then cascaded down and interpreted from the HM Government road map mention in the Prime Minister’s address last Sunday, there have been many calls and questions from elements of the Centre’s membership regarding access to the equipment that they store with us.

Whilst it was, and indeed is, most pleasing to see and hear the enthusiasm people have to get back on the water we have had to have space and time to liaise with, consult and formulate a plan to ensure as far as is reasonably practicable the safety of the Centre’s staff and its membership relating to boat storage customers, ensuring safe systems of work for our staff, constructing risk assessments, deciding how and who can provide the cover required, ensuring that the fundamental rules of the CJRS scheme are met and maintained and devising a system that is, so long as it is followed, clear and safe, as long as it is adhered to by the members who want access to their boats. This has indeed taken some time.

The matter of access to the water, whilst it is now allowed should and MUST still be treated with caution and measured and responsible behaviours followed in line with those being advised by the various governing bodies, the Harbour authorities, the RNLI and HM Coastguard. Please do NOT put anyone at risk in these times, it is unfair to put additional and unnecessary stress and strain on emergency services at this time.

I am pleased to advise that as a project that will have a rolling review, we can now say that we have moved from total closure to a point where initially the boat parks will be able to be accessed from Wednesday through to Sunday between the hours of 10am and 4pm (starting from Wednesday 20th May 2020). Initially there will be a member of the team on site between those times based in the classroom and if needed they can be spoken to through the slightly open window or at a safe distance. No internal areas of the building will be unlocked at this time and again this will be subject to an ongoing review. Changing facilities nor toilets will be available in the first step in order to protect the staff members and indeed the members. When on site members MUST follow the widely publicised ‘social distancing’ rules and if for example using a double handed vessel MUST be from the same household as current guidance stands.

There will be sanitiser and signage on site and I urge you to follow the practices needed and notices displayed during this period. As I said we will be constantly reviewing this process and it remaining or easing in anyway is indeed going to be down to people behaving responsibly.

A couple of other points which are very important, firstly, the times stated are indeed the times the boat parks will be unlocked, outside of that they will be CLOSED, staff cannot wait beyond the times stated for numerous reasons, and nor can they, under the allowances publicised provide and support or assistance over and above the basic matters mentioned above, to do so would contravene the guidance document we are currently governed by.

Should you come ashore late and the boat parks are closed, you may leave your vessel on site should you wish to do so but you would do so at your own risk.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all those that have shown a large degree of patience across these times and would urge you to please be kind and courteous to the staff on site and indeed each other as we endeavour to work forwards to keep everyone happy and as safe as we indeed can in these most testing times.

Should you need to communicate with the Centre please email enquiries@mount-batten-centre.com

Your continued patience and support are very much appreciated at these difficult and testing times.

Alex R King – Centre Director

Mount Batten Group

All COVID-19 updates from the Mount Batten Watersports and Activities Centre can be found here: https://www.mount-batten-centre.com/covid-19-updates/