ACTIVE Tameside is keen to stress the closure of all its centres through the second lockdown is temporary.
As a not-for-profit charity the trust’s ethos is to automatically freeze all direct debit payments and all members are being contacted directly.
The Active Tameside website is being regularly updated with news and information here.
The trust said the closure announcement was made with ‘deep regret’ and they are profoundly committed to continuing their strong focus on supporting the health and wellbeing of their communities throughout the lockdown period.
This will be carried out through its website, social media channels and Active Tameside app which is free to download from Google Play or the Apple App Store.
Chris Rushton, Active Tameside chief executive, said: “The health and safety of our members, users and staff is absolutely paramount and we will continue to monitor and review the situation accordingly in adherence to Government advice.
“We expect to be safely re-opening our centres – under the same high levels of precautionary measures which we’ve had in place since re-opening in July – very soon and we are already eagerly anticipating and building towards that prospect.
“Along with all the people who use our facilities we are disappointed to close yet again, particularly in light of the tremendous response we’ve had since emerging from the first lockdown. That response has been truly staggering and we thank everyone for their incredible support so far.”
Since reopening in July, Active Tameside has welcomed more than 150,000 bookings across the bulk of services including gym, swim and class sessions and swimming lessons. The trust also briefly re-opened activities such as bowling at Tameside Wellness Centre and several children’s attractions prior to the Tier 3 system being implemented across Greater Manchester. Clip ‘n’ Climb was reopened as recently as October 24.
Chris added: “We have been overwhelmed by the messages of support we have received both during our phased reopening and in advance of the new lockdown.
“They have certainly helped us to stay upbeat as we seek to assist our loyal customers in staying both physically and mentally well during the pandemic.
“The extent of people’s commitment to caring for their own health and wellbeing through the use of Active Tameside centres is very clear to see.
“It demonstrates the dire need for leisure trusts like us to be allowed to operate and offer the facilities that are so essential to helping keep our local communities healthy and happy, particularly during these very challenging times.
“Although we understand difficult decisions are having to be made, the closure measures are very disappointing to an industry which again and again has proved to be both highly safety compliant and low risk when it comes to the spread of coronavirus.
“According to the latest aggregated data collected and reviewed by the Research Institute of our national body UKActive, just 156 customers were reported as testing positive from among more than five million visits made to sample gyms in the UK during the week October 5-11.
“During the same period in England there were found to be just 2.83 cases per 100,000 visits reported, with similar figures for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
“This endorses the case for gyms and leisure centres to remain open safely, particularly as the sector has worked so closely with the government to develop stringent guidance which it has strictly adhered to since reopening.
“We continue to campaign on this matter and as a sector we firmly believe we are essential to supporting the nation’s health and wellbeing in the face of Covid-19 and beyond.”
Active Tameside’s community outreach schemes, Live Active, Active Education and Everybody Can – which continued to provide essential support to the most vulnerable during the first wave of Covid-19 – will be operating throughout the latest lockdown to safely deliver their much-needed services.
Following the huge success of its online activities and social media reach out during the first four-month lockdown period, the trust will again be ramping up it’s ‘Helping you to live your best life’ pledge to motivate and inspire home-based health and fitness.
News regarding the closures along with live workouts and health and fitness tips and advice are being rolled-out on its social media channels and weekly newsletters are being sent out to members featuring updates and home-based activity content.
Alongside a large library of home workout videos on its website and Active Tameside app, members can access Les Mills virtual classes via the app for just £5 per month – free for Active Premier members at https://www.activetameside.com/les-mills/