All East District Clubs, Life Members, Management Team,
Firstly, I hope you and your family are well in the continuing health crisis and you are enjoying the festive season as best we all can under the government restrictions.
We have reached the end of 2020, a year which has been more difficult for our way of life in Scotland and for the aquatic sports in particular than we could ever have imagined. All our clubs have had limited periods within which we were permitted to undertake training in the pool since lockdown - some even more limited than others. However, we all now find ourselves in Tier Four as a result of increased Covid-19 infections in Scotland (with the exception of the more isolated parts of North District).
Although we do not know how long we will remain at the highest levels of restrictions, as severalcommentators have stated there is at least some light at the tunnel in that vaccines are now becoming available. The rollout of these should allow society to return to some level of normality once a sufficient proportion of the population has been vaccinated. There is light - though we don’t yet know how long the tunnel may be.
District Committees have been working on plans for events to take place once such events can beundertaken safely and within the restrictions. Although the present Tier Four status was perhaps unexpected and might delay some events proposed by some of the committees, these preparations mean that the events can be quickly tailored to suit the precautions appropriate at the time and event information can be issued quickly once the restrictions allow. I would like to thank all the District Committees for their hard work preparing these plans and in particular the Swimming Committee, which has been working continuously and tirelessly since the AGM, preparing these plans and indeed executing these by way of virtual meets in the last months of 2020.
I also extend my appreciation to all clubs in the District for the way they have been working with oneanother to ensure that all the clubs have had the opportunity of some pool time, even if not in pools with which they are traditionally associated, co-operating with one another to ensure this is done successfully.
Clubs which have traditionally been seen as rivals have been working closely with one another to achieve this. To me, this is the essence of sport: competitive once the starting signal is given but all working together where this is for the benefit of the athletes. Well done to all the athletes who stepped up to the National and District virtual meets and my thanks to the club coaches and other club officials who supported them to get there.
I’m looking forward to 2021 and I hope you are too. Hopefully we will be able to return to training soon and I’m confident that competition will return in a format that we would all recognise sometime over the next few months. In the meantime, please all keep safe.
Les Rodger, East District President
31st December 2020