The Radnorshire Indoor Bowling Association (RIBA) stadium opened to members on Tuesday 1st September under the ‘new-normal’ coronavirus restrictions specified by BowlsWales operating within tight Government regulations.
Anyone going into the stadium is subject to ‘track and trace’ as well as comprehensive coronavirus hygiene restrictions. Playing hours are 10am – 12 and from 2pm – 4pm. The two hour midday break allows members to visit the café, while Centre Manager Mike Evans and his volunteers complete the required precautionary Covid disinfection process between matches.
Fully qualified stadium manager Mike Evans earlier completed test-playing sessions with volunteer bowlers and has trained volunteer member stewards to operate safely under the new regime. He has also published full details on Social Media and members will also be advised by email where possible.
The club won’t be open in the evenings, or at weekends and there will be no team games at this stage. The traditional members’ open club competitions are also on hold.
Only alternating greens (rinks) are in use, again to ensure social distancing. Games are all ‘friendlies’ since no measuring is permitted. Members can only play in singles games, or doubles where there are family or similarly safe ‘bubbles in place’. This all means the stadium will expect to have 12 players or fewer on the greens at any one time.
The club isn’t ready to welcome new members and spectators at this time; although the café is open, again within a social distancing framework.
RIBA Chairman Paul Vaughan emphasises that welfare of players and volunteers is the priority of the Trustees particularly since many of the usual daytime players are in older age categories recognised as being most at risk of serious Covid disease. The club can only afford to re-open since it is a registered Charity that relies entirely on volunteers to support Centre Manager Michael in operating the stadium.