Gyms to re-open in Blackburn with Darwen and some shielding restrictions eased

Published Friday 4 September 2020 at 18:10

Government has today announced that gyms, fitness and dance studios, indoor swimming pools and sports clubs can re-open across the borough next week.

These business restrictions which were not eased on 25th July; will now be eased across the whole borough from Tuesday, September 8, 2020.

For residents who have been shielding; the restrictions are to be eased in the wards with national restrictions (to the South and West of Blackburn, Darwen and rural) from Monday 21st September. This is to give those who are shielding time to adjust and prepare.

The Help Hub is still operating to support those who need it:

Residents shielding in the restricted area (to the North East of Blackburn) are to continue shielding with a further review on 23rd September.

Details on the revised shielding guidance can be found here.

There is to be no change to the restricted areas regarding social interaction and travel guidance.

The eight wards are those with the highest rates of infection.

They include:

  • Audley and Queens Park
  • Blackburn Central
  • Roe Lee
  • Billinge and Beardwood
  • Bastwell and Daisyfield
  • Shear Brow and Corporation Park
  • Little Harwood and Whitebirk
  • Wensley Fold

Residents can check which ward they live in by clicking here.

The Government restrictions mean anyone living in these areas are still not allowed to meet with family and friends from outside their household.

Denise Park, Chief Executive of Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council, said:

Tonight’s announcement is a testament to the hard work of residents, local communities and the local authorities who have all worked to bring down the rates of infection.

It’s really important that our businesses can safely re-open and we are continuing to advise and enforce safety measures where we need to, making use of all the powers available to us. We are a Covid-safe place.

To maintain this positive progress, it remains really important that we all continue to wear face coverings where necessary, practise good hygiene and adhere to national social distancing rules.

Councillor Damian Talbot, the Council’s Executive Member for Culture, Leisure and Young People, said:

I’m delighted to see that the Government has agreed to allow these facilities to reopen.

Operators of gyms and other indoor sports facilities have proven that their premises are Covid safe and the fact that there have been no Covid cases in such facilities emphasises this point.

In Blackburn with Darwen we have heard some heartbreaking cases of businesses that have struggled as a result of the extended measures and I know that some have been brought to the brink of folding.

The Council is still pressing on the issue of financial compensation.

I also do not understand why close contact beauty salons have not been allowed to reopen and we are raising this concern with Government.

I am grateful to those providers who raised their concerns with the Council, and for your patience at this incredibly difficult time.

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