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Covid 19 Update - July 2021

Following the government’s announcement on Tuesday last, we have today received the following instructions from Sport Ireland.

The lifting of restrictions planned for the 5th July will now not be permitted in line with the government announcement. While this news will no doubt come as a major disappointment it is anticipated that this delay will be a short-term delay with the 19th July provisionally set as the date for further reopening. This will be dependent on the public health situation at the time.

In the meantime, the current restrictions as listed below will remain in place for the 26 counties.

  • Outdoor sports matches & competition can recommence.
  • Indoor facilities such as gyms, swimming pools, leisure centres and sports clubs can reopen for individual training. A parent/guardian can be present with a Juvenile player.
  • Two members of the same household can train together.
  • One-to-one training between a participant and instructor/coach can take place providing the instructor/coach is accredited by GAA Handball.
  • In relation to one-to-one training for Juveniles, to comply with Child Safeguarding guidelines a parent/guardian must also be present if one to one training is taking place with a coach. In this case a maximum of 3 people are allowed to be present with social distancing measures in place.

Restrictions in the six counties are not affected by this announcement.

Today’s email from Sport Ireland is attached below for reference.

Is mise le meas,

John Kelly

National Manager, GAA Handball


Dear Sport Ireland Stakeholder,

As you will be aware, on Tuesday, June 29, the Government of Ireland announced the next phase of re-opening which will see some modification to the plans provisionally announced for July. A cautious approach with an emphasis on lower-risk activities will be followed.

Details of the full announcement can be found on the website here. Key highlights relating to sport and physical activity are summarised below:

The number of spectators permitted at outdoor sporting events will increase as planned, to a maximum of 200 attendees for the majority of stadia, and to 500 for stadia/venues with capacity greater than 5,000, with appropriate protective measures.

The following is not yet permitted:

Indoor activities, such as organised events, return of group training, exercise and dance classes will not yet proceed. It is anticipated that this will be a short-term delay, provisionally until July 19, pending the development of an appropriate risk-management system by Government.

Sport Ireland will continue to provide any additional or relevant updates to the sector in advance of July 19th. Should sporting bodies have specific queries in relation to how restrictions impact their sport, please feel free to contact the NGB, High Performance or Participation Units for further details.

Sporting bodies are requested to continue promoting safe practices regarding travel to/from training and competitions, management of access and egress points, the appropriate management and scheduled cleaning of toilets facilities and ensuring appropriate Covid Officers are present to implement best practice guidance.

International Travel

The current government advice is to avoid non-essential international travel. From July 19th, subject to the prevailing public health situation, Ireland will operate the EU Digital COVID Certificate (DCC) for travel originating within the EU/EEA.

Return of Spectators

In a step-wise manner towards full spectator return, pilot events will continue to be rolled out throughout July. These pilot events provide an opportunity for spectator return whilst assessing the implementation of the necessary protective measures. Sport Ireland invites engagement from NGBs with capacity and capability to safely deliver events with a spectator attendance greater than the numbers permitted in the public health guidance.

Kind regards,

Brian Staunton, NGB Support Unit Manager