The New Normal; What to expect when we open
We are nearly ready to open our centres and welcome our community back.
It’s been a long time since we closed in March, but we’re happy to say we will soon have the opportunity to welcome you back through our doors once again, hopefully mid July 2020.
However, we wanted to make our customers aware that things will not be as they were prior to the COVID-19 outbreak. We have been working hard to plan how we can reopen our centres in the safest way possible, to accommodate the maximum number of people whilst following government guidelines.
Our members and our community are the heart of South Downs Leisure and we wanted to reassure you that we are taking every precaution necessary to ensure your confidence in our ability to keep you safe, happy and healthy.
What does this mean?
We are taking a phased approach to our reopen strategy to allow a consistent and controlled recovery of our Charity. Worthing Leisure Centre will therefore be the first centre to open its doors and will serve as your hub for all things FIT4 related. Field Place Manor House & Barns and Davison Leisure Centre will also be opening in a limited capacity and will support Worthing Leisure Centre with additional classes and racket sports.
Whether you will be attending at Worthing Leisure Centre, Field Place Manor House & Barns or Davison Leisure Centre, we will have a guided system in place to manage customer flow through the activity areas;
- Equipment will be spaced out at each site to allow for appropriate distancing and cleanliness.
- We have reduced the capacity of individual classes where necessary following government guidelines and to ensure your peace of mind.
- Where feasible we have taken certain activities and classes outside to utilise the space available and fresh air.
- You must be respectful of every customer in our facilities and adhere to the social distancing 2m policy.
- Certain activity areas such as the gym will have clear rules and conduct upon entering that you will have to abide by to continue to us these services.
Cleanliness, hygiene and keeping our members safe is our number one priority;
- Clear guidelines about cleanliness and personal responsibility will be visible at each centre and activity area.
- Hand sanitising stations will be located around the centres.
- An enhanced cleaning regime will be in place.
- Changing rooms and other areas of the centres will be closed for the foreseeable future so please bear this in mind and bring only the essentials (drinks bottle, towel etc.).
- Water stations will be limited but accessible, so we would advise you to come prepared with water.
- You must clean down the equipment after each use.
- Maintain social distancing and respect others’ space.
- Contactless payments only, where possible.
- Any customer cross over points will be clearly marked.
- Staff at key areas will be on hand to guide and inform our customers.
- You must book online to access the classes, gym or any other service regardless of location.
- Failure to book or a failure to adhere to the safety guidelines may result in temporary suspension of your membership.
‘These steps are to ensure the safety of all South Downs Leisure Customers’.
As you may have seen we are transforming the main sports hall into the largest gym space in West Sussex to allow ample social distancing in an area 17,200ft². This will accommodate a wide variety of cardiovascular and resistance equipment along with a dedicated functional training area. Whether this will be your first time in our gym, or you are returning as an experienced user, we will provide FREE downloadable programs to support your exercise journey. You must BOOK in advance to use the gym and this can be done via our app or website. You will not be able to use the centre if you have not booked in advance. This is for your own safety and allows us to monitor and control the flow of customers and the execution of our cleaning protocols.
In addition to the launch of FIT4 Live streaming (accessible via our app or website) our team has also redesigned our timetable to improve efficiency and participation. Combining virtual and instructor led classes, our timetable will be able to accommodate up to 4,000 spaces per week across our sites and on our outdoor training areas. The timetable will go live toward the end of the month for your consideration and you will be able to book with the usual 7 days’ notice you are familiar with. (more information to follow)
Field Place Manor House & Barns will support our timetable by providing a small number of Yoga and Pilates classes. Tennis and table tennis will continue to be bookable as well, as part of your FIT4 membership.
We are happy announce that Davison Leisure Centre will primarily be hosting badminton, tennis and table tennis as part of our phased reopening. Limited access to the fitness suite will also be available as part of the new bookable service.
Currently we do not plan to open swimming or Splashpoint Leisure Centre on 4th July. Whilst government guidelines are changing rapidly, we need to do what’s best for the Charity for us to sustain a long-term service for our customers.
Plans are underway, however, to bring swimming and Splashpoint Leisure Centre back into our offering as soon as we feel it is safe to do so. Information will follow so please keep an eye out for our updates, as we fully appreciate how important swimming is to a large proportion of our community.
Groups and Clubs
The aim of our reopen strategy is to accommodate as many people as possible and maximise confidence within our membership that allows us the opportunity to rebuild the charity to its former glory. Therefore, we need to take small steps to get the business back on track and not open activities just because we can or before the charity can cope with them. So, to get the business back on track we need to focus on the most widely used activities within FIT4 which would be the Gym and Group Exercise classes. Once we have gained customer confidence that we can operate a COVID-19 safe space for customers to enjoy exercise and have created enough of a solid membership base we can start to review clubs, user groups and community with real determination.
As a charity we rely on the support of you all as members, and the community, and in return we reinvest all our profits back into the facilities and community activities. We are estimating under social distancing measures and the closure this will cost our charity in excess of £1m which will take some years to recover but please be assured we WILL ACHIEVE this, and we believe we will return stronger in the future.
We are excited to bring back all our groups and clubs and we will be contacting you all individually as we things develop, to reintegrate your service back into the fold.
READ THE LATEST INFORMATION FOR SWIMMING
All queries about a booking you may have missed or your booking that’s coming up will be answered by our teams when they are back in the office.
We have frozen all direct debits as part of our closure, and we will be contacting our membership base with regular updates before we open.
We will be releasing a schedule of when our membership teams are back in the office to be available to deal with your enquiries but in the meantime please see the following answers to the most common questions we have received;
- All memberships/payments have been frozen so you are not paying while we are closed.
- All prepaid and Annual memberships will be extended to accommodate the time we have been closed.
- When we reopen if you need to continue to freeze your membership you will be able to do so in consultation with the membership team.
- If you cancelled your direct debit by mistake you will be able to reinstate it prior to our centres opening to allow you book our services.
- Junior memberships and Junior access to our centres will be allowed via our booking system and if all the requisite inductions have been completed, with more communications to follow.
We appreciate that things are chaotic and ever changing at the moment. We are in unprecedented times, but we are determined to rebuild the charity for our members and our community.
We are hard at work to provide you the best possible service we can, in a safe and welcoming environment. Your welfare and the welfare of our community is our number one priority.
From all the team at South Downs Leisure we would like to thank you for your continued support of our Charity. We truly appreciate your patience, understanding and we look forward to seeing you all very soon.
South Downs Leisure Family
More updates to follow..