Water provision at UKU events

Further to discussions on britdisc and twitter, please see below for some more background on the changes to water provision at recent and future UKU events.

The water provision at events has been a concern for some time, and we've tried a number of different ways to come up with something that is efficient, cost-effective and not unduly wasteful of water or plastic.

The root of the problem is being the "supplier" of the water and/or its container. 

In the past tournaments have used 10l or 15l flexible plastic containers, or larger water tanks, that were re-filled during the event and positioned at various points around the venue, and then re-used over multiple events.  However - on reviewing that against the relevant advice and standards we concluded we really had to discontinue that practice.  Whilst most of us would have considered them clean for personal use, its not quite the same if an organisation is providing them to people as containers of drinking water.   Individuals (i.e. players) can choose to put drinking water into whatever bottle(s) or containers they find helpful and convenient.

Alternatives...

We have looked into having a temporary water supply piped around the venue at UCL - but the cost is significant.  Furthermore, the approach requires some major additional infrastructure to be installed really close to the office buildings/house and Watford FC's 1st team training pitch - creating additional risks for us.  That approach doesn't really give you "pitchside" water anyway.

Two years ago we tried water tanks at UCL.  They allow us to put additional drinking water sources around the venue, but with that solution its not possible to refill them during the weekend, and still isn't really "pitchside".  Feedback from that wasn't great - the water warms up over the weekend - but its an option we might return to.  The weight of the full tanks, and the vehicles used for delivery, also means that in general conditions there are restrictions on the locations where the tanks can be positioned.

Usually the sites we're using do a have a good supply of mains drinking water - certainly this is true at UCL for example.  The problem is putting the supply near to the pitches.  And especially if you want a supply at literally every field.

Having spent quite a bit of time exploring various avenues, it appears that the only way we can provide pitchside water and meet the relevant standards is to provide bottled water.  

So - should we supply bottled water for all players at every pitch?

We have discussed this in detail, but just cannot make it add up as a sensible approach at Tour events.  It would require many thousands of litres to be bought, delivered to and stored at the venue despite the availability of free and unlimited tap drinking water.  For the record we are doing this for World U23s in July - but will be working with the teams to switch to the mains supply.

We have considered offering a service to individual teams that really want to have water delivered to their pitch for each game - but have been waiting for any kind of feedback or response to the changes.  There is not enough time for us to offer this option at London Calling 2015, but if we receive general interest from some teams we will look at this idea in more detail.  To indicate interest please email admin@ukultimate.com. 

Finally - if you know how to solve this problem in a way that is both appropriate to our events, but also meets the required standards, please get in touch.