©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 1376 553468
Essex Cricket players and the majority of non-playing staff have been placed on furlough leave because of the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Cloudfm County Ground has been closed to the public for nearly two weeks, with staff having already been working from home in an attempt to minimise the potential spread of COVID-19.
But, following a board meeting earlier in the week, the club have made the decision to place the playing staff as well as the majority of non-playing staff on furlough leave and make use of the UK Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.
In a statement, Chief Executive Derek Bowden said: “To start off with, I want to say that my thoughts are with everyone affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
“It’s vitally important that in these unprecedented times, we listen to the advice of the UK Government and stay at home, stay healthy, look after one another and protect the NHS.
“From a business perspective, by utilising the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, we are able to preserve and protect jobs at The Cloudfm County Ground during a financially damaging period.
“In accordance with UK Government advice, the club have been strictly following the suggested protocols in order to reduce the potential spread of COVID-19, with the health and wellbeing of all of the staff and the wider community at the forefront of our planning and decision-making.
“With this in mind, the club will operate with reduced staff throughout April, with regular assessments taking place beyond that.
“We hope that this will be for as short a period of time as possible and that we can all get back to work and enjoy some cricket in the near future.
“Lastly, we continue to urge our members and supporters to listen to the UK Government’s advice. Stay at home. Protect the NHS. Save Lives.”
There will be no professional cricket in England and Wales until at least May 28 at the very earliest due to the pandemic.
This is when the T20 blast is supposed to begin and is also just before the start of the scheduled test series between England and the West Indies.