LISTEN: Richard Pearson explains what the Aberfeldy Multi Sport Festival is all about
Aberfeldy Multi Sports Festival hopefully running this summer and are looking for volunteers to help out.
Despite some summer events being cancelled due to the pandemic, Aberfeldy Multi Sports Festival Organiser Richard Pearson is hopeful that the event can run this year after cancelling in 2020.
The Aberfeldy Multi Sports Festival, which was born out of the Aberfeldy Middle Distance Triathlon, is set to take place on the 21st and 22nd of August, and will incorporate the Drummond Hill 10km Trail Run, Go Swim Loch Tay and closes out on the Sunday with the Triathlon.
The Government guidelines, released last week have given some positive news to the events business, and Richard explains how that news has been received by the Multi Sports Festival, “we’ve now been keeping a very close eye on the government guidance that that’s coming out and the latest government guidance that came out last Friday, was very positive for us in terms of, we think we can deliver Aberfeldy safely within those guidance notes that came out.”
The new guidelines permit outdoor contact sports and spectators which will allow, the festival to run this year, with some sense of normality, but things will still be different. Under the guidance, they will be allowed 500 people including spectators.
Richard describes some of the protocols that will be brough in to work with the guidelines for the event, “We’ll use a time trial start process and what that means is that we will set people off individually and there will be a gap between each person starting. So, we’re creating a physical distance between each athlete.”
As well as using a Time Trail start time, the festival will also bring in other method to limit the risks, as Richard explains “we will introduce increased hygiene facilities that you know hand wash stations ET cetera on site and we will introduce additional cleaning regimes in certain areas for example, changing facilities, shower areas and washrooms.”
Limiting the Impact on the Area
There are obviously some nerves for everyone as we come out of the lockdown and begin to get back to pre-covid conditions, and Richard tells us how the Festival plans to work with the communities to limit the impact and risk. Its “really important to us that we get this right and, that the impact on the community is as less as possible and we are very conscious of communities nervousness about mass gatherings and big groups coming into the area.”
Richard further explains that he feels that communication with the local communities is key, “I think it’s key, as well that we will where possible communicate as much as we can with the communities. And so that’s through community councils, through various other community groups within the areas that we operate in in Highland Perthshire we’ll make sure, that the community knows about this and we’ve already started that process in in Kenmore and in Aberfeldy.”
Volunteers for the Event
A Key part of the event is the volunteers who help to make it run so successfully. Helping to run registration, lining the routes, and helping with a variety of other roles during the event.
As Richard tells us, “We can’t operate these events without volunteers. You know volunteers are gold to us and there’s various opportunities that volunteers can get involved with.”
For anyone who wants to volunteer can do on the Aberfeldy Multi Sports Website.
The festival is also looking for other volunteer organisations, to get in touch to help and are looking to work with them.
Richard is keen on this, saying that “in the past, we’ve had great support from 4 local scout groups in the area and they’ve maned aid stations for us, and in return we’ll give them a donation to their to their club or organisation.”
Richard goes on to explains that they have been “reaching out to other clubs within the areas. Particularly sports clubs who have had a similar pause on their activities through the pandemic, that events have had and would like to talk to them about potential volunteering opportunities. Football clubs, tennis clubs, bowling clubs, Etcetera within the area, and again talk to them talk about some sort of reward scheme that we can. We can introduce whereby that you know, we give back to the clubs in return for their volunteering.”
Any volunteer organisations who are intrested in getting involved can get in touch with the Festival via firstname.lastname@example.org.