COVID-19 – Our Procedures

COVID-19 – Our Procedures

We're good to go!

In light of the latest government announcement regarding the lifting of all restrictions due to COVID-19 on July 19th, we have carefully considered how we can continue to operate The Matthew safely for all of our visitors, staff and volunteers.

Safety continues to be our top priority. Alongside all of our usual safety procedures, we will be keeping our rigorous cleaning procedures in place. We are fully compliant with the We're Good To Go scheme designed by VisitEngland and will continue to follow industry and Government COVID-19 guidance on cleanliness.

We also have a few points that all visitors need to be aware of and to adhere to for us to be able to open safely.

Protecting our visitors, volunteers and staff

  • All of our volunteers have received their double dose of vaccinations and will be continuing to self-test regularly.

  • Visitors, volunteers and staff should stay at home if they (or someone in their household) has a new persistent cough, a high temperature, or has lost or experienced changes to their sense of taste or smell, even if these symptoms are mild.

  • Please also remember that you are required to self-isolate if you or someone in your household has had a positive COVID-19 result, or if you have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace.

Visiting The Matthew

  • We understand that some of our visitors and volunteers may be anxious about mixing with others, so we will continue to restrict the number of visitors allowed on board when we are moored. If we are busy, you may be asked to queue. Please note that your time on board may be restricted if there are a lot of people waiting to go on.

  • We will continue to provide hand sanitiser at the entrance gate and request that all visitors use it before boarding the ship.

  • As The Matthew is an outdoor venue, we do not require the wearing of face coverings when visiting the outside areas of the ship, although you are free to wear one if you wish. However, we do request that face coverings are worn if you need to go below deck to use the facilities. 

Test and Trace

  • Although the requirement for all individuals over the age of 16 to check in to a venue will no longer be in place after July 19th, we will continue to provide our official NHS QR code poster at the entrance gate and encourage you to scan in using the NHS COVID-19 app on your phone.

  • If you do not have the app but do wish to provide your details, our volunteers will have a form at the entrance gate that you can fill in with your name, contact number, date and time of visit. Your details will be destroyed after 21 days, in line with data protection requirements.

On board the ship

  • Some areas of the ship remain closed to the public, including below deck (the toilet facilities will be available to use if required for passengers on a trip).

  • Outside areas are open, but please do bear in mind that although social distancing is no longer required after July 19th, some visitors may be anxious regarding their proximity to others, so we ask that you remain mindful of others whilst exploring the ship.

  • Our volunteers will continue to regularly wipe down and sanitise areas that are likely to be touched frequently, such as the handrails.

  • We ask that you continue to take notice of any instructions our volunteers may give you while on board (or waiting to board) – they want to keep you and other visitors safe.

Public trips and private hire

  • As social distancing is no longer a requirement, we have increased the number of passengers on all of our trips scheduled to take place after July 19th. Our maximum number of passengers for trips is 40 people, and for static hires is 50 people. Please do bear in mind that some passengers may be anxious regarding their proximity to others, so we ask that you remain mindful of other passengers whilst on a public trip.

  • If the bar is open for your trip, we will be continuing to use disposable cups. 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. Please note that the bar is cash only – we do not have the facility to accept card payments on board.

  • Please book with confidence. If the coronavirus requires us to change our plans or you to change yours, we are continuing to offer a refund or rebook guarantee for the time being. See our Booking Terms & Conditions for more information.

Group visits and bookings

  • As The Matthew is an outdoor venue, there will no longer be a restriction on the number of people in a group wishing to visit the ship when we're moored up outside M Shed.

  • If you are making a group booking for a trip, you can book a maximum group of 15 people for Fish & Chips and Avon Gorge trips. Group bookings for a Harbour Trip is a maximum group of 10 people.

  • Larger groups are directed to our private hire options for the exclusive use of The Matthew.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding our COVID-19 procedures, please contact the office on 0117 927 6868 or email us at You may also wish to read the official information on the government website about keeping yourself and others safe.

Plan Your Visit: Don't forget, it's free to come on board and explore The Matthew. Our volunteers love to talk about the ship and its history, so do ask them questions! Booking is not required to visit the ship when at her mooring, but donations are always welcome. 

Book Tickets: If you’d like to book a trip, please visit the booking page where you’ll find details and online booking facilities for all of our currently confirmed public trips.

Subscribe: Sign up for our email newsletter to be the first to hear about new trip dates.

We look forward to welcoming you aboard soon!

(⁠Page updated 15 July 2021)

Photo By Visit Britain
Photo by Visit Britain.