Please note this guidance has been updated. See https://bmfa.org/News/News-Page/ArticleID/2695/LATEST-COVID-19-RESTRICTIONS-AND-MODEL-AIRCRAFT-FLYING-Updated-09-11-2020
Further to the announcement from the Prime Minister on Saturday regarding new restrictions in response to the rapidly increasing cases of COVID-19, we must now update our advice for England to reflect this.
Members should continue to keep themselves updated on current government and NHS advice. Please see https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus for the latest information.
Members are advised to follow the precautions provided by the NHS at all times details of which you can find here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
Subject to a vote of Parliament, the Government will introduce further restrictions from Thursday 5th November until 2nd December (at the earliest), which limit the reasons why people can now leave their homes for at least the next four weeks (see https://www.gov.uk/guidance/new-national-restrictions-from-5-november).
Model Flying in the club environment
The Government has ordered that certain venues must close, including indoor and outdoor leisure and sporting facilities. We therefore see little option for model flying clubs to continue operating during the period of lockdown and they should close.
Therefore, our advice is for members to stay at home and make an early start on their next masterpiece.
BMFA Organised events, contests and roadshows
The BMFA is advising that all events and contests scheduled to take place in the next 4 weeks must be cancelled at this time.
The site will be closed to visitors during the period of lockdown.
Model flying itself has not been prohibited during the lockdown period and as an outdoor recreation may possibly continue in public open spaces dependent on any local restrictions. BMFA insurance remains valid as long as you are operating lawfully. However, legislation limits outdoor gatherings to no more than 2 (unless from the same household) and the BMFA advises that members do not fly alone for safety reasons.
The devolved administration in Wales imposed a firebreak lockdown from 23rd October that is in place until Monday 9th November, this firebreak lockdown effectively means that the same restrictions, that will be in place in England from Thursday, already apply in Wales and will do until 9th November. With the exception that you cannot meet any person from another household.
Following the end of the firebreak, a new set of national rules for Wales will be introduced. However, it is not yet clear what these will be.
From today (2nd November) the Scottish Parliament has introduced a 5 Tier system of Protection Levels. However, non-contact outdoor sports (and therefore model aircraft flying) is permitted in all tiers and non-contact indoor sports is permitted in Levels 0, 1 and 2 for over 18s and also in Level 3 for under 18s. See https://sportscotland.org.uk/media/6229/phase-3-return-to-sport-and-physical-activity-guidance-301020-final.pdf
The current regulations in place in Northern Ireland, which will be in place until 13th November permits outdoor non-contact sport with a limit of 15 people subject to following public health advice on social distancing etc.
The BMFA Office functions remain largely in operation as usual, though most of the staff are now working remotely and we regret that the Office is closed to visitors. Please use firstname.lastname@example.org as the primary means of contact.
Important note:- We must advise members to follow Government/NHS guidance and stay at home wherever possible.
Please stay safe. It’s time to get the building board out again!