RINGWOOD Health and Leisure Centre is reopening on Monday (August 3).

New Forest District Council is going to be reopening its five health and leisure centres to Fitness Direct members for gym sessions and group exercise sessions.

Applemore, New Milton and Ringwood open on Monday, with Lymington and Totton opening on (Friday, August 7).

Councillor Mark Steele, the district council's portfolio holder for leisure and wellbeing, said: "They're still the same centres, that was really important to us to keep that friendly feel, but people will now be greeted on arrival with a new queuing system with one queue for the gym, and another for group fitness, information to assist them will be on display, and they will see hand sanitiser dispensers all throughout the centres and we have signs on the floors to direct customers and show the new one-way system around the centres.

"Coming to one of our centres is an enjoyable experience. What we have worked on means that this will continue to be the case and our customers can relax, knowing that we have given really detailed thought to what is in place to keep them safe. We've worked to industry guidance, tested everything we're doing, and I am confident the centres are ready to welcome people back."

Changes include:

  • Reduced class sizes
  • In the gyms, the equipment has been moved around so social distancing can be maintained, or screens have been installed
  • Activities must all be pre-booked
  • Everyone must clean gym equipment before and after use with spray and paper cloths provided
  • Centres have been deep cleaned and cleaning timetables increased in frequency
  • There will be 15-minute gaps between gym bookings and classes to allow for additional cleaning

The council says all swimming pools are planned to re-open by the middle of August. They will have a slow, medium and fast lane and customers will be able to book hourly slots.

Prior to reopening, leisure centre users can drop in for a walk around the centres, starting with Applemore, Ringwood and New Milton. No pre-booking is required. For more information click here.