ACTIVE Tameside, a charitable trust which runs community leisure centres and wellbeing programmes in the borough, has announced the safe and long-awaited reopening of its centres which have been closed since the Covid-19 lockdown in March.
Seven of its Active centres, including their £15 million flagship facility Tameside Wellness Centre in Denton, will welcome the public back from 6am on July 27 following the Government’s easing of lockdown restrictions.
Gyms will reopen in the majority of centres, with floor layouts altered to allow users to get back to their much-missed equipment safely.
And pools at Active Ashton, Copley, Medlock and Tameside Wellness Centre will reopen for safely distanced lane swimming and club usage. Swimming lessons are still unavailable but will resume when it is safe to do so.
Group exercise classes will resume with reduced capacity to ensure a safe distance between members. Equipment and studios will be sanitised after every class and new class timetables will be released on the Active Tameside website.
All activities must be booked in advance via the online booking system at www.activetameside.com or via the Active Tameside App (available to download from www.activetameside.com/app) to manage capacity and ensure social distancing.
The health, safety and wellbeing of staff, members and the community is paramount for Active Tameside.
Management and staff wish to emphasise the extreme diligence and care being undertaken to ensure each facility and resumed activity is provided in a safe, reassuring and welcoming environment and will adhere to the continuing social distancing and sanitisation measures.
All staff are undergoing comprehensive Health and Safety training prior to opening and safety measures to protect staff and visitors have been installed including protective screens, customer safety signage, regular and stringent cleaning regimes and sanitisation stations.
The trust would like to stress the importance of users familarising themselves with the new safety measures ahead of visiting any gym which are available online at www.activetameside.com/reopening
In other updates, Active Tameside cafes, creches, gymnastics lessons and attractions; Hyde Leisure Pool, Adventure Longdendale (formerly Total Adrenaline) and Adventure Medlock (formerly Sky High Adventure) remain closed at this time.
Members will be contacted directly about their memberships.
Chris Rushton, Active Tameside chief executive, said: “We are truly ecstatic to be able to announce this news to the Tameside communities we serve.
“We’re looking forward to seeing our members and users once again, as we know from the messages and interactions on our social media channels that so many people have missed our facilities, activities and staff greatly.
“Recent research carried out by leisure industry body, ukactive, shows there has been a serious decline in physical activity in adults and children as well as a huge impact on mental wellbeing.
“We want to get back to what Active Tameside does best, providing the ways and means for our communities to live their best lives.
“We want to reassure everyone about the extensive safety measures we’ve put in place to ensure the health and safety of staff and visitors while continuing to provide friendly and welcoming facilities.”
Throughout lockdown Active Tameside has been determined to continue to make a difference to people’s lives and its staff and outreach services have provided tremendous support where most needed.
Its Active Education service, which provides high quality physical education curriculum primary schools, has been supporting over 40 local schools by delivering PE sessions for vulnerable youngsters and the children of key workers during term time.
And their assistance was invaluable during the two-week May/June half term as it helped 10 primaries to remain open by providing cover in schools where staffing was an issue.
Many headteachers and school staff have come forward to sing their praises and express gratitude.
Meanwhile out in the community the Live Active service – which help makes physical activity easily accessible, particularly to those with long-term health conditions and older residents – has been out and about helping to keep up spirits and fitness levels.
Live Active’s Active Streets team has recently been engaging with socially isolated residents at a housing complex run by New Charter Homes by holding outdoor tai chi sessions.
As well as the physical benefits residents enjoyed chat and laughter with the Active Streets team and each other and the service is now being rolled out to other areas in Tameside.
They have also continued to deliver the regular health walks – essential for maintaining fitness, social interaction and wellbeing for many vulnerable, older adults – easing concerns and encouraging those who need it most to take part with six walks now back up and running across the borough.
Over the last few months the trust has kept in touch with members and residents by live streaming workouts and quizzes, posting online fitness instructor videos, nutrition, health and wellbeing advice, exercise resources and insightful blogs.