After work by rural organisations with government ministers and pro-shooting MPs, the government has announced exemptions to the rule of six for England which cover shooting (14th September).
- Any outdoor physical activity which requires a licence issued by a public body for the activity itself, or for equipment used during the activity, will be exempt from the gathering limits.
- For shooting, this means that where the organiser or a participant holds a valid shotgun or firearms certificate, there is no limit to the number of people who can gather for the purpose of the relevant activity whilst outdoors.
- The organiser will be required to have undertaken a health and safety risk assessment and put in place all reasonable measures to limit transmission of COVID-19.
- The exemption does not apply indoors where the gathering limit of six people will still apply.
- Employees, such as beaters, pickers-up and loaders are also exempt from gathering limits, both indoors and outdoors, where their gathering is necessary for work purposes.
The document ‘COVID safe principles for game shoots in England’, which has been updated to reflect the changes to legislation that effect shooting, which came into effect on 14 September 2020, can be read here.