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Sheffield IVFDF 2022

25th – 27th February

Covid-19 Policy

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Last updated: 10th February 2022. Please note that this policy may change before IVFDF, particularly in response to government guidance. We will notify ticket holders of any changes.

As the first in-person IVFDF and one of the first large in-person UK folk dance events since the pandemic, we are aware that people may understandably feel concerned about returning to in-person dancing.

We are in a much better place than we were in 2020, but Covid-19 has not gone away and its risks to our community remain.

Dancing indoors is a high-contact activity involving heavy breathing (unless you are exceptionally fit! ;-) ) and therefore has a high potential for spreading Covid-19. As a committee we are very aware of the serious responsibility of holding an IVFDF in these times. While it’s impossible to hold a dance event during a pandemic that is entirely risk-free, we wish to protect our attendees as much as we possibly can.

If you have any questions or concerns about this policy, please feel free to contact us.

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We have one Covid entry requirement for all IVFDF 2022 attendees (including artists, workshop leaders and volunteers) aged 18 or over:

  1. You must show evidence that you have taken a negative lateral flow* test in the last 24 hours (unless you cannot take Covid tests for medical reasons).

You will need to show this before entering the building to check in and collect your wristbands.

* If you are required to take a PCR test for work or travel reasons, a negative PCR result is fine and you don’t have to do a separate LFT.

Why do we have this requirement? We want all attendees to take a lateral flow test as we believe this will be the best way to reduce the potential for Covid transmission at IVFDF. A valid Covid pass cannot be shown in place of a negative test result as Covid passes can be generated from vaccination status, test result or medical exemption but do not display details, so they do not tell us whether someone has done a test. Therefore, we are requiring people to show evidence of the negative test result itself. As of January 27, government guidance and Sheffield Students’ Union (SU) policy no longer require us to ask for Covid passes.

If you cannot take a Covid test: If you are unable to take a Covid test for medical reasons, there will be an option to indicate this when you buy your ticket. This information will only be visible to our committee, and you will receive instructions about how to notify us of your arrival so we can handle your check-in confidentially. You must tell us this in advance; you can email us if you have accidentally bought your ticket without selecting the option. If you are travelling to IVFDF and find yourself medically unable to take a Covid test, contact us at once. You cannot tell us at check-in for data protection reasons. If you have any concerns or questions about this, please contact us.

How do I show that I’ve taken a Covid test? We will accept either of the following as evidence of a negative Covid test:

  • A photograph of a negative test result (if shown on an electronic device that displays the date of the photo)
  • A copy of a text or email confirming a negative test result, with the date (you can print this or show it on your device

You will be required to show your proof of a negative Covid test to a steward before entering the building where check-ins are occurring. If you cannot produce evidence of a negative test result from within the last 24 hours, you will be asked to complete a lateral flow test outside before entering the check-in area. This is to protect the safety of other attendees and our stewards. Please note that we will have a limited supply of tests on the door, but we cannot guarantee their availability; it is your responsibility to obtain a lateral flow test for yourself.

Anyone who cannot show a recent negative result, will not take a test on the door and has not contacted us privately will not be admitted to IVFDF until they have taken a lateral flow test and can show a negative result.

To protect our stewards and committee members, attendees are required to wear a face covering that covers their mouth and nose until a steward has checked their negative Covid test result (unless exempt).

We will not be asking for proof of face covering exemption. Please do not challenge other attendees if they are not wearing a face covering, as they may be unable to do so.

Once your negative test result has been checked, you are not required to wear face coverings at dances or workshops. You may need to wear a face covering while moving between venues and in common areas of the SU (see “Masks/ Face coverings”) below).

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Under-18s are exempt from any Covid test evidence.

However, if you are under 18 and attending IVFDF, we would very much appreciate it if you could take a lateral flow test before coming, if you are able to do so. (We completely understand that it is not always feasible for young children to take lateral flow tests!)

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If you are coming to IVFDF for the entire weekend, we would very much appreciate it if you could take a second lateral flow test on the Sunday to help minimise the chance of Covid-19 being spread during the festival. LFTs are usually available from the Student’s Union, or you can bring some with you.

This is not a requirement, and we will not be checking LFT results for this (but obviously, leave IVFDF at once if you test positive!)

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Being vaccinated against Covid-19 is not a requirement to attend IVFDF 2022.

However, IVFDF 2022 would strongly prefer attendees to be fully vaccinated, including booster vaccines (unless medically exempt). Studies have shown that vaccines help to prevent transmission of the virus, and we kindly request that all attendees take this into consideration.

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As per NHS and government guidance, if you:

  • test positive for Covid-19 less than 10 days before IVFDF (unless, as per NHS England advice, you have taken two LFTs, both negative, on days 6 and 7 and do not have a high temperature)
  • Have coronavirus symptoms (unless your PCR test result was negative)

we are very sorry, but you may not attend IVFDF. Your ticket will be fully refunded.

If you test positive or develop symptoms during IVFDF, you must immediately leave IVFDF and let us know (via a text message to a number that will available in the programme). Your ticket will be refunded fully or partially depending on how long you were at the festival.

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IVFDF 2022 attendees will not generally be required to wear face coverings (except before check-in as mentioned above) as many people cannot dance comfortably while wearing them. However, the SU is currently asking people to wear face coverings in common areas, so you will need to wear a face covering (unless exempt) while traveling between venues.

We recognise that some dancers will prefer to wear masks / face coverings, and we ask that all attendees be considerate of this when approaching others or asking them to dance. Similarly, please remember that some people are unable to wear face coverings, and do not challenge other attendees.

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Hand sanitizer will be available at all the evening dances.

The SU has an air handling system for ventilation, which we have been told can be operated at maximum during IVFDF. This does make some of the venues quite cold, so bring warm clothing to wear between dances.

We are asking our callers to indicate ahead of time if a dance requires partner-switching, so that you can choose to only dance with the same partner all evening. Please note that in contra dancing there is always a lot of interaction with other people in your set, so if you do not want to dance in close hold with others you may wish to avoid the contra events.

We hope to have some lanyards available that attendees can choose to wear to indicate their comfort levels with different types of contact. We’re still ironing out the details of this - please check back nearer the time.

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No event can ever be completely safe from Covid-19. We are taking every measure available to us to protect IVFDF attendees, but not everything is within our control. In particular, please note that:

  • Sheffield Students’ Union will be open to students and the public throughout IVFDF weekend. The SU ask all their staff to take daily lateral flow tests and to wear masks.
  • The bar in the Octagon is run by Thornbridge Brewery. We are in the process of confirming what Covid measures their employees will follow.
  • The sleeping venues are not owned by Sheffield Students’ Union. While we have exclusive use of the sleeping venues, it is possible that venue staff or caretakers might need to access them during IVFDF. We will request that any visitors wear a face covering and take a lateral flow test beforehand, but we are not able to require them to do this.
  • Meeting Room 1 in the Octagon Centre is currently being used as a Covid-19 Testing Centre by the University of Sheffield. This room is directly next to some of the rooms being used for IVFDF 2022 activities and will have to be passed when accessing these rooms.
  • However, this testing centre is only for people who are not showing any Covid-19 symptoms and will be closed for the duration of IVFDF. Therefore, we do not expect it to be a risk to festival attendees. Should the centre be operational during IVFDF we will make the centre organisers aware of our event and try to coordinate crowd flow as best as possible. Please find further details about the centre here.
  • Please note: The test centre is controlled by the council and neither we nor the Students' Union have any control over when it will open. However, with the information given to us, it seems very unlikely that it will be open.

For more Covid-19 information specific to Sheffield SU, please see

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