Walsall and Dudley leisure centres close but others still open in Black Country and Staffordshire
Many leisure centres remain open but some across the region have closed in a bid to help reduce the spread of coronavirus.
Dudley Council will be closing its council-run leisure centres from tonight (Fri) – Crystal Leisure Centre in Stourbridge, Dudley Leisure Centre, Halesowen Leisure Centre, The Dell Stadium in Brierley Hill, and Coseley Sports Centre will all be shut down tonight.
Walsall Council has closed the council's leisure centres at Bloxwich and Oak Park, Walsall Gala Baths and Darlaston Swimming Pool for the "foreseeable future".
The move at Walsall came into effect at 10pm on Wednesday, however most other leisure centres in the Black Country and Staffordshire remained open on Thursday with some reduced class sizes and extra cleaning.
The chlorinated water means the virus cannot spread in pool water while leisure operators are urging customers to be vigilant with hand washing and cleaning equipment.
Sandwell Council was due to be having a meeting about its leisure centres on Thursday morning.
In the meantime Sandwell Leisure Trust, which runs centres across the borough, asked all customers to was hands when leaving and entering buildings and to clean workout stations after use.
In Wolverhampton, the WV Active centres are also open as normal but the steam room at WV Active Central and the saunas at at the Bilston-Bert Williams centre are closed.
In Dudley, all fitness classes have been cancelled but Dudley, Halesowen and Crystal Leisure Centres are open for swimming and gyms.
Meanwhile Freedom Leisure, which runs the council-owned centres in Stafford and Stone, is still open and has reassured customers that the pool is safe and accessible for all.
Customers are being urged to spray gym machines after use and teams are also cleaning "high-contact surfaces" regularly.
Membership payments in Walsall will be frozen for one month, with bosses giving further advice "as soon as possible".
A spokesman for the council said: "We have taken this step to ensure we play our part in reducing social contact to help contain the spread of the coronavirus and to protect our most vulnerable residents.
"We do of course recognise the impact this will have on regular users of these facilities and that they will have questions regarding advance membership payments and so on.
"We can also confirm that we will be freezing membership payments for one month. We will seek to provide further advice and guidance as soon as possible and ask that our valued service users bear with us in these unprecedented times."
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