Reading Room And Children’s Play Area Risk Assessment And Guidelines



1. Introduction.


a. With effect of the 4th July 2020 the Government has allowed the reopening of village halls and playgrounds. As a community we have to follow the Government’s regulations and guidelines. We also have, not only a duty of care to those who will have access to both our Reading Room and to the Children’s Play Area, but a legal requirement to ensure that they are safe.

b. Both the Government and our insurers require us to carryout a risk assessment of both the Reading Room and our Children’s Play Area.


c. Government Guidelines for village halls include:


                                        i. Pinch Points’ to be identified and measures introduced to control them e.g. entrance and exit, toilets etc.

                                      ii. No ‘loud’ music to avoid the necessity for people to shout or move closer.

                                     iii. Sanitiser to be made available on entry and exit.

                                     iv. Buildings should be well ventilated.

                                      v. People ‘shielding’ or at risk, including over 70’s, are advised not attend social functions.

                                     vi. Gatherings of 30+ people in buildings is illegal unless the building is deemed to be covid secure.

                                   vii. Groups of 6 are permitted from the same family or ‘bubble’ but groups must not mix.


2. Risk. The risk factor being considered here is that posed by the coronavirus which as far as is known is principally spread by:


a. Touch and close contact due to respiratory droplets.

b. Contaminated surfaces.


3. People at Risk. The people who may be placed at risk by the reopening of these amenities are:


a. The users.

b. The cleaners.


4. Measures that may Mitigate the Risk.


a. Personal distancing – currently 1 metre where mitigation is applied such as a face covering and for short periods of time only. Two metres remains the recommended distance.

b. Washing of hands.

c. Use of sanitiser.

d. Wearing of disposable gloves.

e. Wearing of face coverings.

f. Disinfection of surfaces.

g. Floor markings.

h. Information and direction boards.




5. Recommendations.


a. Reading Room.


                                        i. Keeping the whole venue closed except for specific village events where special measures would be put in place.

                                      ii. Limit the number of people that may assemble at any one time. Exceptions may be for private events where attendees are members of the same household and members of so called ‘bubbles’.

                                     iii. Limit the frequency at which the venue may be used eg once per week.

                                     iv. Closing of certain areas including:


(1). The kitchen.

(2). The book shelves.

(3). A toilet cubicle.


                                      v. Limit the use of tables and chairs to those requested for a specific event.

                                     vi. Signs for:


(1). Entrance and exit – front and back doors.

(2). Use and the provision of sanitiser.

(3). Toilets – one person only.

(4). Reminders eg self-distancing.

(5). Floor markings/arrows when necessary.

(6). Closed areas.


                                   vii. Maintenance of a list of attendees for contact tracing.

                                  viii. Cleaning. After each usage it must be considered that the Reading Room is potentially contaminated. It will therefore need to be cleaned before/after each use. To this end the following are required:


(1). Names of volunteers to assist with the cleaning.

(2). A check list of what is to be cleaned with signature to confirm cleaning has been carried out.

(3). Advice on PPE.

(4). Advice on when the venue should be cleaned after an event.

(5). Instructions for the users/hirers to record what has been used and to leave items used out for cleaning and not put away.

(6). Provision of anti-bacterial cleaning agents.


b. Children’s Play Area.


                                        i. The children’s play area includes:


(1). Swings.

(2). Slide.

(3). Benches X 2.

(4). Waste bin.


                                      ii. Government Guidelines for play areas include:


(1). Limiting the numbers allowed on the equipment.

(2). Use of a booking system where possible.

(3). Signage advising on self-distancing, use of masks and the use of sanitiser.

(4). One adult only of a family to accompany children.

(5). Setting a time limit.


                                          iii. If we are to open the Children’s Play Area the following recommendations are made:


(1). The area to be cleaned/disinfected on a regular basis.

(2). The table-benches should be included within this facility.

(3). Cleaning/Disinfecting. Regular cleaning/disinfecting is recommended with measures similar to cleaning the Reading Room implemented.


6. Conclusion.


a. The Government’s easing of lockdown does not mean that the coronavirus has gone away or become any less dangerous. It is therefore vital that decisions made are carefully considered to get the measures that will be introduced as correct as is possible to keep our community safe.

b. It is recommended that whatever decisions are made that the measures decided upon should be reviewed on a regular basis.



Hilly Dobson                                                                                                                       1st July 2020    

Parish Councillor &

Response Coordinator

Mobile: 07942864354







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