07/05/2021- Covid 19

Step 3 Update: Restrictions to Lift for Organised U18 & Adult Fencing (England)

‘Bubbles’ replaced by ‘Capacity Caps’, allowing U18s and adults to fence in group sizes limited by available space no earlier than 17th May in Organised Sport settings.

In preparation for moving to Step 3, BF is providing an update on expected changes. Please note that these apply to organised sport only – fencing delivered by affiliated clubs to BF members.

In Step 3, the numbers of people that can get together to fence in an affiliated club setting will no longer be determined by a ‘bubble’ size. Instead a particular indoor space will be subject to a capacity cap. Every person in a space counts – spectators, coaches, fencers, welfare and covid officers. Every person must have at a minimum of 100 sq ft (9.29 sq m) within the area they are occupying. So if your fencing salle is 1000 sq ft you can have 10 people in the space. If the changing rooms are 300 sq ft you can have 3 people in the changing room at any one time.

Other than when actually fencing every person must remain socially distanced (other than household groups). This may mean that some venues will not be able to support the maximum capacity cap number.

Next Steps: Clubs should get in touch with venue operators to determine capacity caps for the spaces they are using and update their risk assessments accordingly. Risk assessments should include capacity cap calculations and descriptions of measures to ensure that (other than when actually fencing) all participants remain socially distanced.

Clubs are still required to keep records of attendees and may choose to run sessions in smaller groups to reduce risk.


Other Step 3. Updates:

  • U18s and adults will be able to fence each other
  • Car sharing will be allowed
  • Licensed indoor competition will be allowed, more guidance to follow
  • All other BF guidelines and adaptations are expected to remain in place – we will be reviewing these as more details become available
  • 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)


As more detailed information on Step 3 becomes available BF will be updating it’s guidelines for clubs and competitions which we expect to publish by 17th May. 


Other Notes

  • An Organised Fencing activity is one that is delivered by a BF affiliated club or registered coach, delivered to BF members, under BF policies, procedures and guidelines.
  • Please note that informal fencing activity (ie fencing not taking place as part of BF affiliated club or partner activities) will be subject to rule of 6/two households.
  • For context, the summary of the full roadmap (in relation to fencing) can be found here.
  • As a reminder BF recently published the newly updated Equipment Hygiene Protocols which will apply to all activity.


More information can be found here – Frequently asked questions on the national coronavirus restrictions | Sport England

If you have any queries regarding this and other announcements please contact us using this form. Many of the queries we receive 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.

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