Whilst this is my first foreword for Pitchcare, many of you will know that I have been editor for a while - it's merely part of the natural progression of Pitchcare that I will address you going forward.
It's a very strange time for everyone and, as I write this, Wimbledon and The Open have both been cancelled, sport in general is effectively closed for business, all pubs, restaurants, theatres etc. remain closed and the impact of Covid-19 on our everyday lives has become even greater.
Governing bodies have set out guidelines for each sector in order to carry out 'interim works', but I'm sure this is affecting each club in many different ways. Understandably, people are worried about the general economic outlook, and who knows when we will return to a sense of normality?
However, it's encouraging to see so many images on social media of you all maintaining surfaces, even with reduced resources and restrictions.
I appreciate everything is currently 'ticking over', however, in our April/May issue, we continue to provide articles that represent facilities in their 'normal' environment. In these quieter times, if anyone would like to speak to us about their current situation or conduct a telephone/video interview for a future article, please don't hesitate to contact me.
Here at Pitchcare we have, like so many businesses, adapted to alternative ways of working, with most staff members working from home. However, our online shop remains fully functional and we have actually seen a record number of sales from the retail sector. At least this hopefully means most people are staying at home!
Understandably, in doing this, our regular routines are affected, and we can no longer enjoy so many of our usual activities with family and friends - which may have an impact on our mental health. It's important to recognise when we're struggling and reach out to fellow industry colleagues or loved ones. It is important to remember that it is okay to feel worried, scared or helpless and that everyone reacts differently. Remember, this situation is temporary and, for most of us, these difficult feelings will pass. Staying at home may be challenging, but you are helping to protect yourself and others by doing so.
There are a number of websites you can visit should you need support, help or guidance in these challenging times, whilst your associations are also able to offer help and guidance.
When all this is over, I do believe that our sports facilities will, given your undoubted talents, recover very quickly and we will get back to 'normal' in quick time.
Finally, I would like to thank those advertisers who retained their presence in the April/May issue, with a view to getting those machinery and product deliveries underway and demonstrations booked in due course.
Keep talking, keep safe and we will get through this together.