COVID-19 – Our Procedures

COVID-19 – Our Procedures

We're good to go!

The safety of our visitors, staff and volunteers is our top priority, so we have carefully considered how we can open well and have all the necessary rigorous cleaning procedures in place. As well as our usual safety procedures, there are a few things all visitors need to be aware of and to adhere to for us to be able to open safely.

We are fully compliant with the 'We're Good To Go' scheme designed by VisitEngland and are following industry and Government COVID-19 guidance on cleanliness and social distancing.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding our COVID-19 procedures, please contact the office on 0117 927 6868 or email us at

On arrival

  • Due to social distancing, the ship’s capacity of people allowed on board at any one time is lower than it would usually be. You may be asked to queue, and your time on board may be restricted if there are a lot of people waiting to go on.
  • Visitors will be required to use the hand sanitiser provided before boarding the ship.

Test and Trace

  • In line with new regulations (April 2021), every individual over the age of 16 must check in when boarding the ship. You can either scan our official NHS QR code poster with the NHS COVID-19 app (you will need to download the NHS app to your phone) or provide your details – name, contact number, date and time of visit – to our volunteers. This is so that The Matthew complies with Test and Trace requirements. Your details will be destroyed after 21 days, in line with data protection requirements.
  • Please stay at home if you are feeling unwell.

Group visits

  • If you would like to visit the ship as a group, please note that groups of up to six people only will be allowed on board, in line with the 'rule of six'. This will be in place until at least June 20th, in line with the current guidance.

On board the ship

  • Some areas of the ship are closed to the public, such as below deck and where the captain is on the poop deck. The outside areas are open, but numbers will be restricted at any one time.
  • Our volunteers will be regularly wiping down and sanitising areas that are likely to be touched by people, such as the handrails.
  • Please take notice of any instructions our volunteers may give you – they want to keep you safe.
  • We are using disposable cups for the time being. To help reduce waste, you may like to bring your own flask for a hot drink or your own cup to use with drinks purchased from the bar.

Booking a trip

  • Please book with confidence. If the coronavirus requires us to change our plans or you to change yours, we offer a refund or rebook guarantee. See our Booking Terms & Conditions for more information.
  • As we are working with a reduced capacity and social distancing requirements, group bookings on our public trips are currently limited to a maximum of six people.
  • Our private hire bookings are also operating at a reduced capacity – we are taking bookings for a maximum of 30 people only at the moment. We will revert to our usual capacity of 40 people for a cruise or 50 people for a static hire as soon as government restrictions are relaxed.

Don't forget, it's free to go on board and explore and our volunteers love to talk about the ship and its history, so do ask them questions! No booking is required to visit the ship when she's at her mooring, but donations are always welcome.

Trips for 2021 are now being confirmed – all currently confirmed trips and are listed on our booking page and are available for online booking. You can subscribe to our newsletter to be the first to hear about trip dates, or keep an eye on the booking page and social media.

(⁠Page updated 05 April 2021)

Photo By Visit Britain
Photo by Visit Britain.