Lockdown Club Support & Networking Information

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With another three week restrictions now in place it’s important for us all to work together and focus upon postivity and creativity via all digital means possile. This is the latest from a number of national and county video meetings:

ENGLAND SQUASH

Some ideas that arose and were discussed at the ES county chair meeting:

  • 30 minute sessions for the juniors in the county – to this extent Nick Peel, Maidstone is running regular live Zoom sessions for juniors.
  • Using the downtime to develop a cohesive strategy for the coming year and season.
  • Online coaching sessions for a fee.
  • Coaches offering vouchers to be redeemed post-lockdown interspersed between paid for sessions
  • Social media posts – live interviews; video fitness sessions; video tricks; online quiz, fun facts, etc.
  • Ensure all clubs are keeping in touch with their members.
  • Possibility for clubs to use the time to clean down and sanitise in preparation for the return of play?

Useful pro player, club challenges and informative links:

  • Use the England Squash #SquashAtHome where-ever possible via social media. To link up and see the ingenius ways other individuals countrywide are keeping engaged click here
  • Lots of stay in work out online fitness programmes are being provided by all level of players and great to see our own Martin Clark, Rodmersham included – click here

KSRA COMMUNICATIONS

There are three main points for everyone at county level to consider and be involved with developing:

  1. Potential return August – ‘Jamboree’ of squash with tournaments targeted at all groups; Juniors, Adults, Ladies, Racketball, Doubles (Squash and Racketball).
    Mixed ability team matches with top end players graded by Squashlevels with the aim is to engage as many clubs hosting tournaments as possible every weekend, not one club per area.
  2. Support network for coaches – virtual sessions and updating certification courses.
  3. The Kent talent pathway poster is being designed by Tom Woods, Rodmersham and will be distributed to all clubs when completed. It will include a new KJA, (Kent Junior Academy), logo to umbrella all our county clubs who have an ES registered coach providing the recommended schools and junior academy structure.

To be involved and raise any other points please join either of the weekly scheduled Zoom video meetings:

  • Coaches every Tuesday at 2pm – email request for invite click here
  • Club Chair/any representatives weekly every Tuesday at 7:30pm – email request for invite click here

Keep connecting, liking and sharing each others posts via your own social media channels and our KSRA can be found at the folowing:
Twitter – @Kent_SRA
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/KentSquash/

There is also KSR News Whats App group and anyone wanting to join please forward a phone number.

You have a voice and now more than ever there’s no excuse to keep in touch and share experiences to see us all through this period in time.

Business Rates Relief and Cash Grants for Community Amateur Sports Clubs

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What about business rates and grant support?

Please note that the following information refers to England only. Business rates are devolved to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and there may be different arrangements in each country.

In recognition of the likely impact of Covid-19, the Budget introduced temporary 100% business rates relief for the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors – including gyms and sports clubs – for 2020/21 for businesses with certain rateable values.

In addition, the Budget provided that organisations eligible for Small Business Rate Relief would receive a £3,000 grant.

The Chancellor’s speech on 17 March extended this temporary 100% business rates relief to all businesses in these sectors, regardless of their rateable value.

This means all businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors will receive 100% business rates relief for 2020/21. The guidance issued to local authorities regarding how to apply this relief has been published by the government and to access click here.

This guidance states that the following properties, among others, will be eligible for the relief:

  • Sports grounds and clubs
  • Sport and leisure facilities
  • Gym

Given that there is now no limit on the rateable value of premises to be eligible, it is our understanding that large sports clubs and stadia will also benefit from 100% relief.

In addition to rates relief, certain retail, hospitality and leisure businesses will also receive cash grants through the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant (RHLG).

Those with a rateable value of less than £15,000 will receive £10,000 and those businesses with a rateable value of between £15,000 and £51,000 will be provided with a grant of £25,000.

Small businesses eligible for Small Businesses Rates Relief or Rural Relief will now be provided with a grant of £10,000 through the Small Business Grant Fund (SBGF). This has been increased from the £3,000 grant announced at the Budget.

Recipients eligible for the SBGF will not be eligible for the RHLG.

If you are unsure on the rateable value of your property then click here.

Are Community Amateur Sports Clubs (CASCs) and charities eligible for this support?

Based on the published guidance above, it is our understanding that the additional rates relief is applied after any mandatory relief received, such as that applied to CASC’s and charities. Therefore, these organisations should benefit from the full 100% relief.

However, please note that the guidance confirms that it is for local authorities to administer a local scheme and determine in each individual case when to grant relief.

As regards grant support, see below.

How do I claim for business rates relief and grant support?

To access rate relief, you do not need to do anything as it should be reflected in your bill. However, should you have any queries over eligibility for, or provision of, the relief you should contact your local authority.

Local authorities are in the process of contacting all organisations who are eligible for the RHLG or SBGF. This may be done either electronically or through the post, so it is suggested you check the post at your registered address, if it is safe for you to do so.

If you believe you are eligible for either the RHLG or SBGF and you have not been contacted by your local authority, we suggest making contact with them to clarify this.

Funding for the grants has now been made available to local authorities.

Guidance for businesses on the grants click here and guidance for local authorities click here.

Coronavirus Club Support Packages

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SPORT ENGLAND

Most relevant information is probably the Community Emergency Fund section with avenues of funding to protect clubs against the financial implications of the pandemic. The biggest support available to clubs druing this unprecedented time is available via Sport England: https://www.sportengland.org/news/195-million-package-help-sport-and-physical-activity-through-coronavirus

Government provisions:
–       Retail relief increased from 50% to 100% for 2020/21, and rateable value threshold removed.
–       Scope of Retail relief extended to include all retail, leisure, and hospitality businesses.
–       £10,000 grant to all businesses eligible for either small business relief or retail relief (rateable value under £15,000).

LOCAL COUNCILS

Local councils are supposed to be writing to clubs to tell them they qualify for local grants and the deadline for this is 5th April.

ENGLAND SPORT

With immediate effect, ES have put a freeze on all membership and affiliation renewals during the time that the current Government measures are in place (i.e. whilst leisure centres, gyms and sports clubs must be closed).

What does this mean for your club?

Your club and its members will continue to be affiliated throughout this period. Clubs who have paid their affiliation renewal invoice since 1 March will receive discounted affiliation fees next year, pro-rata of the number of months that squash clubs must be closed.

Clubs who are due to renew during the period of Government measures, (or have lapsed since 1 March), will be given a ‘grace period’ so will remain affiliated. Renewal invoices will not be sent during this time. Once the current measures have been lifted, clubs will be invoiced for the number of months remaining in the affiliation year.

For clubs that do not fall into these categories, we will offer a discount to their affiliation fees next year, pro-rata of the number of months that squash clubs must be closed.

Additional support opportunities for clubs include:

  • England Squash Bounce Back grant of £200
    A grant to support your club to host an event to welcome back your players once the UK Government restrictions are lifted.
  • Webinars
    An opportunity to hear from us on the support on offer, share your experiences and the support you require over the coming weeks. The first webinar is Tuesday 7 April at 2pm.

What does this mean for your members?

Provided your members are listed on englandsquash.com, they will remain affiliated members of England Squash.

Members will still be able to access their membership benefits, including the great content we have on our website. A new member money-saving and well-being benefit is being launched soon, so please keep an eye out for this and encourage your members to sign up to make the most of it.

Coaches Club and Direct Members
All coaches and players who hold direct membership with England Squash will be given an extension to their membership in line with the period of the Government measures. They will be able to access their membership benefits and content throughout this time.

UPDATE: CORONAVIRUS GUIDANCE FOR SQUASH CLUBS

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Today the KSRA committee in light of the on-going coronavirus developments have made the decison to end the NW and Outer Kent winter team leagues and any related cup competitions with immediate effect. We will endeavour to assess the ability to run the summer leagues, and if not viable, look to pick up for the next seasons winter leagues.

It’s imperative, as community based clubs, we all now look to keep the best interest of people’s well being at the heart. A number of clubs have already made the decision to close operations and stop participation, but it’s now down to every club to make the necessary decisions to assist matters going forward. Circumstances are changing from day to day and by the end of this week it should hopefully be clear to all, as to the right foot forward.

Please keep following the NHS and government guidance and continuing England Squash updates are available at the following link:
https://www.englandsquash.com/news/england-squash-coronavirus-statement

Keep safe and well everyone.

CORONAVIRUS GUIDANCE FOR SQUASH CLUBS

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Following the recent developments KSR in line with England Squash are following the necessary guidance issued by the UK government and WHO. For now community squash continues, but every club will no doubt have differing conditions to deal with at any given time. The key is to communicating with each other, put in place any provisions available and take the necessary steps when required. For further info please view following link:

https://www.englandsquash.com/news/england-squash-coronavirus-statement

Well done Kent U13 Boys!!

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Kent under 13 boys qualified to play in the national Intercounty Finals in Nottingham last weekend.  The top 8 teams made it through qualification to make the finals and Kent were seeded two. Five of the top six nationally ranked boys in England were playing so competition was expected to be tough  Kent have two of the top three boys so were expecting and hoping to perform.

The team consisted of: –

Coach Steve Franks

Dylan Roberts of Bexley

Jude Gibbins from Beckenham

Luan Woods of Rodersham

Timmy Skopets of Limpsfield

Caspar Bloomfield from Thanet

It was an early start of 10am for the first game against Yorkshire B. Kent got off to a great start with all the boys winning the matches 3-0

That meant Kent were then playing for position 1-4. Next up was a strong Warwickshire side headed by a boy Ranked 5 in England.

Again, all the boys won all the individual matches but the scores were closer than the 5-0 overall score line suggested. The boys put in an excellent performance to make it through to the finals, to be held the following day.

The finals were against favourites and number one seeds Surrey. All the Surrey team were boys that played the junior circuit and were very experienced. Kent put up a gallant effort and all the boys played excellently showing real fight to the end. They lost the final 4-1 with the only winner in the final day being Dylan Roberts

A great effort by all the team making this 5 consecutive national finals and finishing at least 2nd in four of these.

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