As I'm sure everybody is aware there is an awful lot of press and publicity around the virus and while we currently have no swimmers or staff suffering any symptoms we just wish to give some background to our ongoing risk assessments.
At present we are closely following the advice from our governing bodies (the STA and Swim England), The Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity as well as guidance coming out from NHS England and PWTAG (the Pool Water Treatment Advisory Group).
At this moment in time the advice being given is that swimming is still safe to participate in due to the chlorine killing the Coronavirus, as long as there are continued sensible hygiene precautions and, if necessary, self isolation from swimmers and or staff.
Obviously this is a very fluid and rapidly changing arena and you can be assured that safety is our highest priority. Should advice or guidance change we will, of course, inform you as soon as possible.
Finally, if anybody does have any questions or concerns please contact us and we will assist as much as we can.
Check here for the latest updates, best practice and guidance
Thursday 19th March 2020:
Refunds for the current term (Jan 2020) have been issued and added to customers accounts online at the Portal. This means anybody who pays via direct debit will have the credits used towards the April 2020 term when payments start for those in a few weeks and anybody still to pay via card or bank transfer will be able to use the credits to reduce the cost of the April 2020 term.
Already paid? If you have already paid don’t panic. The credits will stay on your account to use towards the Sept. 2020 term or if you decide to not return be available as a refund.
Not returning? Please message us and we will arrange to post out a cheque, or, if you paid online or over the phone via card to refund direct to that
Once again, we are asking that people DO enrol for the April 2020 term so we know how many staff to bring in and what sessions to continue to run - those with low numbers WILL be cancelled. All money IS SAFE and we will ensure all credits necessary are made once lessons restart whenever that is.
Finally - please do not forgot to join our Facebook parents and carers group at www.facebook.com/group/iatde where we are interacting and responding to messages as they arise.
Wednesday 18th March 2020:
Important update - lesson cancellations.
Over the past few days we have been listening to our swimmers and looking at the number of people attending lessons as well as following the updated guidance issued by the UK Government on Monday. The culmination of all of this has lead to us, with immediate effect, cancelling all lessons until further notice. This is not a decision we have taken lightly but we do believe it is in the best interests of all staff, swimmers and families.
As you may know IATDE is a small local company which does not aim to make a huge profit - hence our value for money lesson prices. The only way we can manage this is with everybody's support in ensuring our cashflow. This is our most expensive period due to insurance costs etc. and we are hoping to continue to support all of our staff. Therefore we'd request if you are intending on returning to lessons after Easter that you continue to enrol as normal. All money for lessons is safe and everybody who needs a refund/credit will get them. From a very practical point of view we also need to know what lessons to continue to run should an economic downturn happen. We would hate to end up in a situation where we've cancelled lessons on a set day to discover when we reopen that everybody wishes to return. If you are struggling for money please see our FAQ's below.
- Refund's for the missed lessons will be issued to online accounts as soon as we know we are reopening for business. This is because we want to make sure everybody gets ALL of the refunds they are entitled to and so we do not do it in dribs and drabs where we may miss some out.
- Direct Debits - these will run as normal and we will ensure that credits are applied to the accounts once we are open for business again, or at the latest before it gets to the point where we owe you more in refunds than you owe us in payments (for example if two or three DD's go out and we are still not open we will credit everything due to stop additional payments)
- Cancellations - If you are planning on not returning in April we request you send us a message and we will arrange a refund for you by cheque, or if you paid via card online or via the phone back to the card used.
- Enrolments - in centre enrolments will be available on the first week back when lessons recommence OR you can message us and we will process payments via the phone using cards.
- Badges will be available to collect from these enrolment desks when we restart for all swimmers who are rejoining.
- Struggling to afford classes? If you are struggling due to your own circumstances please get in touch - we can help, but, only if we know! We have in the past, and will continue to do so, help people out who are struggling during these difficult times. Please do get in touch and talk to us confidentially.
We cannot stress enough that this is only a temporary measure and we thank each and every one of you for your support during the period.
As always if you want to discuss ANYTHING with us please get in touch via the usual channels.
Thank you once again,
Mark and Kim
Tuesday 17th March 2020:
Following on from the latest information supplied by the UK Government last night, updated information supplied by the STA and having spoken to our pools we one again reminding parents that we are open for business as usual, however, we are asking the that following guidance is followed:
- Changing Areas - as we are aware these can get busy:
- Please get your child ready and take them on to poolside just before your lesson starts (either yourself or sending them on if they are old). Please ensure shoes are removed as usual.
- Once the children are in the water please vacate the changing rooms and for shallow end swimmers stay in the building or just outside, deep end parents may go and sit in cars etc. If there is an incident we will come and find you but ask that you are also watching out for staff.
- At the end of lessons please either wait in changing rooms, or, for shallow end swimmers come on to poolside to collect your child before getting them dressed and vacating the changing areas again.
- Please help us by not arriving too early for lessons and not staying inside the family changing areas at Castle View.
- Take sensible hygiene precautions.
- We ask that you continue to follow NHS guidance on handwashing etc. and ensuring all children have visited the toilets before lessons commence.
- We would also ask that should your child not be well you keep them away from lessons and follow NHS England advice around self-isolation.
- Parent Watch Week
- Due to how popular these are we are taking the decision to suspend these this term and will try and run an additional one after Easter for everybody by way of apology. Dates and times to be announced.
- Teacher / parent interaction
- To limit the possible chance of spreading viruses between teachers and parents we are asking that conversations are kept to a minimum. Should parents be after an update on how a child is doing, or, has any questions around enrolment please contact us via the usual methods and will try and liaise with your teacher for you.
Finally next week is due to be enrolments and to try and help out parents who do not wish to attend lessons but do wish to book in we will be offering the opportunity to enrol via card via phone. Please message us for info.
Monday 16th March 2020:
Latest information released today from the Pool Water Treatment Advisory Group (PWTAG) has consulted with Public Health England who have told us: “We have checked with our national leads who confirm that coronavirus would be inactivated at the levels of chlorine used in swimming pools.” https://www.pwtag.org/novel-coronavirus-covid-19-latest-information-2/