BD coronavirus update

  • Written By: British Drressage
  • Published: Fri, 13 Mar 2020 17:14

British Dressage would like to reassure members that we are in close contact with our colleagues at UK Sport, Sport England, the Sport and Recreation Alliance and Sports Ground Safety Authority with regards to the ongoing risks and threats posed by the coronavirus outbreak. We are currently in the process of preparing contingency plans, based on the latest available information and government advice.

Yesterday the government announced that the status of the pandemic had moved from the ‘containment’ to the ‘delay’ phase. However, no restrictions have been imposed on public gatherings or sporting events at this stage and in his statement the Prime Minister stated: “It is very important that we are guided by the science. There is very little epidemiological or medical reason at the moment to ban events.”

All sporting activity in England, Wales and Northern Ireland can therefore continue to operate as normal at the present time, although please note that Scotland have placed restrictions on public gatherings of more than 500 people with effect from Monday 16 March. Small scale equestrian activity can still continue as planned – and the vast majority of British Dressage shows, competitions and training events would fall into this category.

We are aware that some major sporting organisations, including the FEI, have announced temporary suspensions of their events until 3 April. However, these are either due to specific concerns about individual players or participants that have already come into direct contact with the virus, or international competition that requires travel to and from affected countries.

It is vitally important that we continue to follow government advice and at present there are no plans to cancel or postpone BD events, although this position may change as the situation evolves in the days and weeks ahead. This includes our Young Horse Forum at Myerscough on 28 March, the Winter Championships at Hartpury from 8-12 April and the Judges Convention at Addington on 14 April. We are monitoring the situation closely – and should the government advice or guidance change we will take action accordingly.

In the meantime, we advise all members to follow the general health advice provided by the NHS and Public Health England:

• Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
• Use an alcohol based hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
• Always wash your hands when you get home, into work or on arrival at venues
• Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
• Put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
• Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean
• Avoid any close contact with people who are displaying symptoms or unwell

Anyone with a new continuous cough or high temperature, or displaying any other flu-like symptoms, should self-isolate for a minimum period of at least seven days.

Important links for information:

Current Foreign Office travel advice: