Leisure centres and gyms face closure - please sign our petition says boss of Everyone Active, which runs Scarborough Sports Village and Whitby Leisure Centre
A gym boss has warned fitness centres could fold if the Government does not let them open soon.
David Bibby, Managing Director of Everyone Active, which runs gyms and leisure centres across the area, including Scarborough Sports Village and Pindar Leisure Centre and Whitby Leisure Centre, is urging people to sign an online petition calling for his sector to be allowed to reopen.
He said the longer his centres have to stay shut, the more difficult it is to keep his 14,000-strong workforce in jobs.
In an open letter on Everyone Active's website, he has written: "We are incredibly disappointed by the decision to not reopen gyms and leisure centres.
"Over the past three months, we have liaised with various Government bodies to ensure our reopening plans and measures adhere to all the recommended guidance and ensure the safety of our customers and colleagues.
"Our teams have worked tirelessly to guarantee our centres were ready to open as soon as the green light was given by the Government.
"Unfortunately, we were led to believe this date would be sooner rather than later, and we are saddened by the realisation that there is now not a clear date for us to work towards.
"The health of our nation has never been so important, and the 7,000 gyms and leisure centres across the country play a fundamental role in encouraging people to be active and live healthier lifestyles.
"We have all seen various reports and articles that suggest we could be heading for a mental health crisis due to the increased anxiety and stress people are experiencing during lockdown – something that regular exercise has proven to help with.
"Our gyms and leisure centres have the ability to support more people during these unprecedented times, and the decision to not reopen them restricts us from being able to do more for our customers and local communities.
"It also puts the future of many leisure centres across the country in jeopardy, as the entire industry battles to remain financially sustainable during these challenging times.
"Everyone Active has a workforce of over 14,000 people and we are doing all we can to keep our colleagues in jobs.
"This becomes increasingly difficult, the longer our leisure centres remain closed.
The entire leisure industry is taking a united stand against this decision, and we ask you to support us in doing so."
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