Updated: 20.07.2021

Every Home Nation has different rules so please ensure you are following the rules that relate to your Home Nation. Latest Home Nation Status is summarised here. This page specifically refers to the Roadmap that is currently planned in England.

Please note that we are doing our best to respond to the information as it is made available to us and sometimes it may take us a couple of days to get clarity over any information that is released by the government.

On 22nd February the PM announced the roadmap to ease lockdown restrictions. This was followed by the publication of the ‘COVID-19 Response – Spring 2021’, setting out the roadmap out of the current lockdown for England.

Sport England publish regularly updated FAQs here.

BF’s approach will be to provide on this page the latest information that we have, indicating what we know and what we expect. If there are any significant changes we will also release news posts and share these on social media.  (Sign up here for our weekly news summary email delivered direct to your inbox.)

If you have any questions please contact us using this form and we will do our best to answer them.

To support our community as they navigate this roadmap, we are scheduling a series of COVID Officer discussion events aligned to the expected dates below. For more details of these and other community discussion events, including how to sign up, please click here.

As a reminder in all the below: coaches delivering 1:1 sessions must be on the BF Register and be minimum L2 qualified.

Step 4: 19th July

The published plan states:

  • No legal limits on social contact


This means:

  • There will be no restrictions on the numbers of those taking part in sessions.
  • All sports facilities will be able to open and there will be no indoor capacity caps. Venues and clubs can however, put in place restrictions for enclosed areas as part of their own guidance and risk assessments.
  • All indoor fencing competitions can resume – Please note that senior GBR ranking tournaments are expected to start in September.
  • Sport specific guidance will still be in place to reduce the risk of transmission.

The government has set out 6 priority actions for sport providers (clubs and coaches):

  • Complete a health and safety risk assessment that includes risks from COVID-19
  • Turn people with COVID-19 symptoms away
  • Provide adequate ventilation
  • Clean more often
  • Enable people to check in at your venue
  • Communicate and train – both people participating and those responsible for delivering the sessions.

We would encourage coaches, parents/guardians and fencers to risk assess all activities before taking part, in consideration of the health of all. Just because the Roadmap permits an activity, this does not mean that it is in all cases appropriate for you, your child or your club and its workforce/volunteers.



Step 1: no earlier than 8th March

The published plan states:

  • Sports clubs/facilities stay closed to grass roots sport
  • Recreation or exercise outdoors with household or one other person. No household mixing indoors.
  • Wraparound Childcare


This means:

  • No indoor fencing activity in any setting for adults will be able to take place
  • Fencing activity for juniors will only be able to take place as part of the school curriculum or part of registered childcare activities, i.e. during PE lessons, after school club where the primary purpose is childcare.
  • 1:1 training/coaching outside in an outdoor public place/outdoor venue (not private gardens) is allowed. Permission to use metal swords outside must be granted by the landowner/landlord/local authority. Restrictions still in place on the distance you can travel.
  • Fencing competitions will not be able to take place.



Step 1: no earlier than 29th March

The published plan states:

  • Rule of 6 or 2 households outdoors
  • Outdoor sports and leisure facilities to open
  • Organised outdoor sport allowed (children and adults)

Sport England FAQs here.

Fencing activity delivered by our affiliated clubs, coaches and accredited partners comes under ‘formally organised outdoor sport’. This provides additional opportunities for BF registered coaches and BF affiliated clubs to provide fencing opportunities for adults and U18 members alike using suitable outdoor facilities.

This means:

  • 1:1 training/coaching can now take place in private gardens. In addition to the previously permitted locations – outside in an outdoor public place/outdoor venue.
  • Registered coaches and BF affiliated clubs can provide formally organised outdoor fencing activities to members (children and adults) based on BF guidelines (sparring bubbles of 15, adapted rules, restrictions on time/number of hits between 2 individuals – more information here).
  • Permission to use metal swords outside must be granted by the landowner/landlord/outdoor operator/local authority.
  • Fencing competitions will not be able to take place.
  • No spectators. this does not apply to carers for disabled people, or adults needed to supervise under-18s in a safeguarding role. Where it‘s necessary for them to be present,  supervising adults should not mix with others from outside their household or support bubble


Step 2: no earlier than 12th April

The published plan states:

  • Indoor Leisure (including gyms) open for use individually or within household groups
  • All children’s activities, indoor parent and child groups (up to 15 people)


This means :

  • Indoor organised fencing activity (affiliated clubs/registered coaches) will be able to resume for U18s in bubbles of 15.
  • Updated 01.04.21 –  1:1 lessons (delivered by registered coaches) for adults can take place indoors


Other notes:

  • Spectators allowed outside on ‘public land’ subject to 2m distancing.
  • Outdoor fencing competitions (all ages) and indoor fencing competitions (U18s) can resume with restrictions and adaptations. Anyone wishing to run a community fencing competition indoors or outdoors prior to 21st June must contact BF to be licensed and approved. Please contact us using this form.

Step 2. U18s Inside from 12thApril – Image/Poster for Community Clubs


Step 3: no earlier than 17th May

The published plan states:

  • Organised adult indoor sport and exercise classes


This means:

  • Indoor space will be subject to a capacity cap and no longer be determined by a ‘bubble’ size
  • U18s and adults will be able to fence each other
  • Outdoor organised fencing – no group size limits, groups of up to 30 spectators allowed on public and private land (social distancing rules apply within groups)
  • Licensed indoor competition will be allowed


More Details

Sport England FAQs and guidance here.

Additional guidance has been produced with Sheridans Sports Group to give providers more advice on what legal issues sport providers need considering and how to tackle them. There is also a second document, specifically on the issues arising from vaccinations and whether providers can stipulate participants must have been vaccinated. Read more information here.

If you have any queries regarding this and other announcements please contact us using this form. Many of the queries we get are answered in our guidance and resources here so we strongly recommend reading this in advance of contacting us.

BF will continue to update our COVID-19 advice here.  You can also subscribe to our new weekly summary email featuring the previous week’s latest news and announcements. Sign up here.


Free Intro Membership

Activate your free, 90 day membership to British Fencing today. Membership insures you to fence at any British Fencing club.


Calling All Teachers

Start your journey on becoming a community fencing coach and introduce fencing to pupils for as little as £20. Find out more today.


BF Digital Portal

Free images and assets for BF Affiliated Clubs. Search, select and request assets for social media and websites.

Join the conversation. Share your stories using #BritishFencing on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram

Our Partners

  • Our Partners