Wiltshire Cricket Talent Pathway Programmes 2020-2021 Update

This is an update for all parents who have a son or daughter who has been invited and/or has registered for a Talent Pathway programme commencing in January 2020

Message from Wiltshire Cricket Managing Director, Peter Sykes

Firstly, many thanks to everyone who has registered and paid for their Girls or Boys Talent Pathway programme starting in January 2020. In light of the current lockdown I thought it might be worth providing a few updates in relation to our programmes due to take place this winter:

Aspirations for this winter:

The most important thing to communicate is that we have every hope and ambition that we will be able to deliver all of our programmes in full and starting on time in early January. Just prior to the announcement of this current lockdown, the ECB had released their detailed, and Government approved, guidance for Cricket indoors in a Covid environment. We have been using this guidance to work with all of our facilities over the production of detailed risk assessments, in order to ensure that all of our programmes are run in a safe manner. Assuming the guidance doesn’t change post this current lockdown, it does mean that there will be some differences to this winter’s programmes. Examples include entry and exit procedures to facilities, social distancing during sessions, and cleaning of equipment. However, any relevant information related to our risk assessments will be communicated to parents and players in pre programme confirmation emails that will be sent to parents in mid-December.

Considerations and Contingency Planning:

Whilst our aspiration is to deliver all programmes on time and in full, we are also very aware that we are operating in extraordinary times. This means that there are various external things that could influence our programmes at short notice. For example, new Government announcements related to Covid-19, or Covid-19 related issues with regards the facilities we are using. Additionally, we are aware that the current lockdown could create some nervousness from facilities in terms of allowing external hirers in to their facilities, and there is of course the unknown over whether further lockdowns will be announced this winter.

Ultimately, the short to medium term future remains very uncertain and it is impossible to predict how, if at all, our programmes this winter may be affected. However, in order to try to counteract any future impacts on our winter programmes we are currently in the process of trying to book as many facilities as possible for the whole month of April. Please note that all of our Talent Pathway programmes are currently scheduled to run from the start of January to the end of March and therefore it is our hope that we will not require any facilities in April. However, by trying to book facilities for April we believe it provides with some degree of contingency planning for the following:

  • Programmes needing to start slightly later than currently planned (e.g. if a facility’s ability to accept external hirers is delayed due to the current lockdown)
  • A further national lockdown being announced at any point between January and March (hopefully this doesn’t happen, but if it did it would allow us to pause programmes and potentially replaced missed weeks at the end of the programme)
  • An individual facility having a Covid-19 related reason for needing to close (in this instance it would mean that whilst programmes in other venues may continue as normal, we would also be able to pause programmes in the facility affected and then replace those sessions at the end of the programme)

Finally, in terms of our contingency planning, it is important for me to say at this point that due to the challenging times we are operating in, we may not be able to treat every programme within the pathway equally. For example, with programmes taking place at different venues across the county, the ability of each individual facility to provide contingency planning for the above scenarios may vary. However, we will deal with this on a case by case basis and do everything we can to ensure players receive the full 12 week programme for which they are signed up to.

Please continue to register + reassurances:

In light of the information above, we would like to encourage people to register and pay for their programmes ahead of the deadlines we have given. This is important so that we have the financial security to deliver the programmes. Where your son / daughter is unable to attend the programme for which they have been invited, please do decline your invitation so that we can go ahead and invite a replacement.

In terms of any individual programmes getting affected this winter by Covid-19 please be reassured that Wiltshire Cricket will offer refunds on a pro-rated basis for any sessions that are missed. As I say, our ambition is that full 12 week programmes will take place but in the event of any programmes not being able to receive the full 12 weeks on time, we will firstly look to use the contingency of April to get as close to the full 12 weeks as possible, and in the absence of a full 12 weeks being delivered we will refund any sessions that are not delivered.