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Home / World News / Covid-19: After ‘huge progress’ gyms, plays get green signal to re-open in UK

Covid-19: After ‘huge progress’ gyms, plays get green signal to re-open in UK

Leisure centres and indoor gyms, along with swimming pools and other indoor sports facilities, have been closed in the UK since March 21. Various organisations have lobbied the government to allow them to re-open in recent days.

world Updated: Jul 09, 2020 22:32 IST
Prasun Sonwalkar
Prasun Sonwalkar
Hindustan Times, London
Pedestrians wearing protective face masks pass sales promotion signs in the windows of a Selfridges & Co. Ltd. department store on Oxford Street in London, U.K., on Thursday, July 9, 2020.
Pedestrians wearing protective face masks pass sales promotion signs in the windows of a Selfridges & Co. Ltd. department store on Oxford Street in London, U.K., on Thursday, July 9, 2020. (Bloomberg)

The Boris Johnson government on Thursday eased lockdown restrictions further after what it called “huge progress” in dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, and allowed live music, art and theatre shows in the open, besides permitting gyms and pools to re-open.

As on Thursday, the UK had recorded 44.602 deaths and 287,004 positive cases, but daily and weekly rise in new infections and deaths have been dwindling, allowing for progressively more economic sectors and areas of public life to re-open from later this month.

Stating that the UK is now a “step closer” to normality, culture secretary Oliver Dowden said:

“The reopening of gyms is the news millions across the country have been waiting for with many people desperate to jump on a spinning bike or dive into a pool”.

“Our comprehensive guidance will ensure gyms, pools and leisure centres have the support they need to reopen safely for their customers and staff. Helping people return to gyms safely will also help the nation get match-fit to defeat this virus”.

Officials, however, said the people will still need to remain cautious and follow guidance about social distancing, wearing face covering and limiting interaction with people outside their immediate family and friends circles.

Leisure centres and indoor gyms, along with swimming pools and other indoor sports facilities, have been closed in the UK since March 21. Various organisations have lobbied the government to allow them to re-open in recent days.

Dowden said: “The reopening of gyms is the news millions across the country have been waiting for with many people desperate to jump on a spinning bike or dive into a pool. Our comprehensive guidance will ensure gyms, pools and leisure centres have the support they need to reopen safely for their customers and staff”.

“Helping people return to gyms safely will also help the nation get match-fit to defeat this virus,” he added.

Leicester in the east Midlands remains under lockdown, unlike the rest of England, where pubs, restaurants and galleries are among those allowed to re-open. Testing in the city with a large population of Indian origin has shown falling number of infections.

ht epaper

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