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Recently, the Government announced its ‘road map’ towards the easing of restrictions and the re-opening of the services that we have all enjoyed in the past.

Indoor leisure, fitness and some cultural facilities like galleries and museums (but probably not larger events venues yet) are likely to be allowed to open sometime in July. This continues to be dependent upon all of us continuing to follow the Government’s advice in order that the transmission of the virus can be controlled.

Behind the scenes, our highly experienced team has been working closely with sector bodies including UKActive and Sport England. Together we are developing new operational frameworks to ensure you, your friends and family are safe when we welcome you back to your venues.

Our plans include:

  • Staff Safety and Training – Ensuring staff are safe and have the training they need in order to welcome you safely back.
  • Facilities- Making some changes to our facilities like installing sanitisation points and changing some technical or environmental controls so that your facilities are ready.
  • Social Distancing - Making changes to apply social distancing like implementing one way systems, spacing out or relocating gym equipment and introducing some advance booking systems. We may also run some group activities like exercises classes in the large sports halls or in the open air.
  • Cleaning – Increased cleaning throughout the day and regular deep cleaning after we close.
  • Supplies - Working with suppliers to ensure we have all of the essentials like hand sanitiser and other cleaning products.
  • Hygiene – Putting in place new and heightened safety and hygiene protocols for our staff and customers.
  • Communication - Making sure that we keep you informed of any changes we have to make and further updates as the official guidance on swimming, sports, culture and events activities are developed.

You can be assured that the measures we put in place will conform to the standards agreed with the Government and which are being steered by eminent medical professionals and virologists.

Following the Government’s announcement about the re-opening of some outdoor recreation facilities, we are currently working with our local authority partners to re-open access to the country park in a safe and managed way.

We are working with Swim England to develop the necessary measures that will provide the Government and their medical advisors the confidence to re-open swimming facilities nationally. These measures will take account of water chlorination, air circulation, social distancing, plus sanitising and operational protocols within changing rooms.

We are delighted that the Government and the Chief Medical Officer have continually stressed the importance of exercise. We have also been really inspired by how people have found ways to be so active and creative whilst at home.

We hope that you have found our Link4Life@Home portal useful, our team has been adding new content every week so you will find plenty of classes, creative activities, recipes and fun challenges for all the family.  

Of course, the recent weeks have been difficult for everyone. We’re really proud to be a charity at the heart of Rochdale communities. We have been privileged to be part of the community response alongside our partners at the council, the voluntary sector and of course, local communities themselves. We couldn’t be more proud of our team and colleagues at this time. 

We’re also deeply humbled by the many members that have chosen to continue to support the charity through donations or restarting memberships. Your help and support means the world to us, really, and we can’t thank you enough. 

We are your charity, and we’re here for you. We can’t wait to welcome you back but we will make sure that when we do, we have everything in place to keep you safe.

We will see you again very soon.

Andy King

Chief Executive