May 2021 Newsletter

In our Newsletter of March this year we reported on some positive news about a return to face-to-face rehearsals after the summer half-term break and we outlined the proposals that were being discussed to facilitate this return. We are now pleased to report that restrictions regarding face-to-face rehearsals have been eased further since our March Newsletter, such that each of our sections can now rehearse as a group. The guidance regarding the 2 metre spacing around each player will however remain but, having carried out a survey of the main hall at Cordwalles School, it has been decided that we will be able to accommodate each group with the appropriate spacing.


By the time you read this Newsletter you will have already received a communication from Surrey Arts setting out the arrangement for our return to Cordwalles and giving guidance on attendance at the school on Saturday mornings for June and July. Please read this guidance carefully so that we can be sure that we follow the guidelines and keep safe during this very positive relaxation of restrictions that have meant that once again, after some 15 months, we will be able to enjoy time playing music live together.

There is an on-line registration form link in the Surrey Arts communication which is to be completed to confirm a parent's approval for their son/daughter attending the face-to-face rehearsal sessions in accordance with the guidelines.

We will now also be able to offer each of our sections a longer rehearsal time, with a total of 2 x 40 minute rehearsal sessions on their allocated Saturday morning, with a 15/20 minute break between each session. Unfortunately, because of the space required for each of our sections to rehearse, we will have to stick to the previously advised timetable setting out the 2 Saturdays during the second half of the Summer Term that each section will rehearse at Cordwalles (see also the rehearsal schedule detailed below). The other 4 Saturday rehearsals for each section for the second half of the Summer Term will be on Zoom.


Rehearsals at Cordwalles will start at 9.30am for setting up and then a 40 minute playing session. There will then be a 20 minute break when we must vacate the hall and then we return for another 40 minute rehearsal session. Please bring any refreshments you will want during the break as we are not yet able to open the tuck shop for the purchase of refreshments. We anticipate the morning rehearsal will then finish at approximately 11.20am.


Orchestra members should arrive at Cordwalles no earlier than 10 minutes before the scheduled rehearsal start time. They should enter the school alone via the pedestrian gate opposite the school main entrance and maintain 2 metre social distancing whilst waiting to enter the school hall. Those in Year 7 and above must also wear a face mask whilst on the school premises, except of course when they are playing a wind instrument.


For collection, we would ask that parents park in the playground to the left of the school vehicle entrance gate and remain in their cars until they are joined by the Orchestra member. A member of our Logistics Team will be supervising parking. Parents are not allowed to access the school premises other than by car for collection and, if collecting on foot, must wait on Berkshire Road for their son/daughter to exit the school. Thank you.


It is our hope that by the time we start rehearsals in September we will be able to resume rehearsing all 3 sections at Cordwalles on a Saturday. We are however keeping all options under review to facilitate a full term of face-to-face rehearsal programme in the Autumn Term, even if the 2 metre spacing requirement is still in place at that time.


Rehearsal dates for the second half of summer term:

  • 12 June - Seniors – Cordwalles (9.30am start – 11.20am finish), Juniors and Intermediates – Zoom rehearsal at 9.30am and 11.00am respectively, for one hour each

  • 19 June - Intermediates – Cordwalles (9.30am – 11.20am finish), Juniors and Seniors – Zoom rehearsal at 9.30am for both for one hour

  • 26 June - Juniors - Cordwalles (9.30am – 11.20am),Seniors and Intermediates – Zoom rehearsal at 9.30am and 11.00am respectively, for one hour each

  • 3 July - Seniors - Cordwalles (9.30am start – 11.20am finish), Juniors and Intermediates – Zoom rehearsal at 9.30am and 11.00am respectively, for one hour each

  • 10 July - Intermediates - Cordwalles (9.30am – 11.20am finish), Juniors and Seniors – Zoom rehearsal at 9.30am for both for one hour

  • 17 July - Juniors - Juniors - Cordwalles (9.30am – 11.20am),Seniors and Intermediates – Zoom rehearsal at 9.30am and 11.00am respectively, for one hour each


Brian Hopper

Chair


brian.hopper@cywo.org.uk

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