January 4th - STOP PRESS
Government Introduced Lockdown - Lessons Move Online
With Immediate Effect
09.06.20 – Darrell Priestley
Understandably, everyone is eager for a time when we can all do the little things we once took for granted; shopping without having to plan in queuing time, popping into a cafe for coffee with friends, not constantly having to watch your personal space. And not panicking if you find you’ve left your disposable gloves or hand sanitiser at home.
At Northern Music Academy HQ we are as keen to return as anyone else, but we believe hopes of a full return to normal are still a little premature. The sensible starting point would seem to be to follow government advice, as the government in turn ‘follow the science’, but since to date the government’s success in doing this has arguably been less than stellar, with quarantine finally arriving around 90 days after it would have been most useful, we will not be relying on this advice alone, however well intended.
Our local High Street has been an odd place of late, and maybe not one where you would want to spend time, but gradually that will change. The queuing we have seen has worked to a point, when a limited number of shops were open, but as an increasing number of shops and businesses open their doors again the queuing system will need to change, if individual queues are not to criss-cross and confuse.
Within our building in Ropergate, we are considering a range of changes to make this perhaps the safest place you can spend time in outside of your own home. That said, for reasons of social distancing, we will not be encouraging anyone to spend any unnecessary time here. Every aspect of behaviour has to be considered, from hygiene, to flow, to use of space. We know you will work with us to keep your visits safe, while feeling as natural and enjoyable as possible. Our aim is a reassuringly safe feel, but with a light touch.
Everything is up for consideration, from lesson times to restricted access, and from waiting times to payment methods. This is in addition to the more obvious hygiene measures you would expect. When we do judge that the time is right, we will welcome all our students back, but we will not rush that judgement. We first want to satisfy ourselves that the outbreak is properly under control, and that any risk to you is low. We believe also that it is not enough that you be safe; the stress levels we have all had to endure for months now mean that, for you to properly enjoy your visit, you also need to feel safe.
While Pontefract, Castleford and the surrounding towns are understandably itching to reopen, in practice that is likely to be a piecemeal process. The Northern Music Academy may not be the first to do so, but rest assured, when we do we will be ready for your return, and very glad indeed to see you.