Coronavirus measures

As Coronavirus lockdown restrictions ease, Newbury and Thatcham Green Gym has been able to restart limited volunteering. We have received guidance from TCV, our parent organisation, and are liaising with the sites where we usually work. A new risk assessment and new procedures to operate in a way that’s safe for our volunteers can be found attached and is summarised below.

Coronavirus Risk Assessment

COVID 19 represents a risk to participants in Green Gym activities which will require changes to our normal working practices in the foreseeable future. These risks and measures to mitigate them may need to change as more information and guidance becomes available.

General Considerations:
Groups at risk at all Newbury and Thatcham Green Gym venues are volunteers and general public.

Hazards Control measures and good practice, in accordance with government guidelines
Risk of Coronavirus transmission through:
– Contact with infected person
– Contact with contaminated surface

To mitigate: Ensure all participants are aware of COVID 19 risk assessment

Minimise contact with general public on task sites

Ensure all participants are aware of COVID 19 risk assessment 

Minimise contact with general public on task sites

Unless the site contact requests a specific maximum number of volunteers, the number of participants during the task is not limited. Participants should, however, form groups of a maximum of 6 people per group, during the refreshment break, maintaining social distance throughout.

Health Issues:
Anyone with health problems, self-isolating, listed as vulnerable or displaying any signs of COVID 19 should not attend. Maintain contact with such members through email and telephone to provide support and encourage their return when it is safe to do so.

Anyone who develops symptoms of coronavirus in the 7 days following an activity should inform the task leader who will then notify the other volunteers and the Contact Tracing Service.

Those aged over 70 to consider their own circumstances and take extra care, if considering attending and should not act as task leaders.

Maintain social distance, minimum of 2 metres. If contact closer than 2 metres, but over 1 metre is unavoidable, face coverings must be worn

Reduce face to face working

Frequent hand washing and/or sanitising
Participants asked to provide own sanitiser

Arrival on site

No car sharing unless same household or bubble
Maintain social distance at parking
Identify location of washing facilities, if any


Observe social distance by forming a circle or horseshoe at briefing
Task leader to note names of attendees and tools allocated. No sharing of pens


Work zones should be set to reduce movement and maximise separation of workers to at least 2m apart
Work side by side, rather than face to face
Where feasible, a one-way system around any bonfire or other common areas should reduce face to face contact
Face masks to be worn at personal discretion, unless government advice indicates otherwise
Always wash hands or use sanitiser before eating, drinking or smoking
Each participant to bring and wear gloves
Personal eye protection/goggles will be provided, if required and then retained by volunteer to bring to future tasks
Face covering for First Aid purposes only

Breaks – eating and drinking

Maintain social distance at all times
Sanitise and wash hands before eating or drinking
Each participant to bring their own refreshments and mugs

Accidents and other incidents

COVID Guidance states that First Aid can be rendered following an accident or incident even if social distancing is compromised. First aiders are reminded that their own personal safety comes first.


Additional signage may be needed to inform volunteers and public of COVID 19 working arrangements

Contact with contaminated surfaces:

Tools to be unloaded from vehicle or compound, one person at a time, by people wearing gloves
Minimise the number of gloved volunteers handling wheelbarrows during a task

Each hand tool to be numbered and allocated to named individual at briefing
Participants may bring their own labelled tools, if suitable for the task and are responsible for their use by themselves only
Participants to pay particular attention to where tools have been placed during the task and only to use those tools allocated to them in person
Tools and wheelbarrows to be wiped down and handles sanitised after each task and if inadvertently shared during task.
Tools to be quarantined for a minimum of 72 hours between tasks
Swinging tools to be avoided for the duration as these should not be used with gloved hands

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