Chesterfield businessman slams 'ludicrous' decision to reopen pubs before his gym

A Chesterfield gym owner says it is ‘ludicrous’ to allow pubs to reopen before leisure facilities as businesses emerge from the Covid-19 lockdown.

Friday, 26th June 2020, 11:01 am
Updated Friday, 26th June 2020, 12:38 pm

Adam Bingham, who runs the town’s Chester Street Gym (CSG), cannot understand why indoor gyms are on the list of businesses that have to stay shut.

Other leisure industry venues, including pubs, restaurants and hair salons, have been given the green light to reopen by the Prime Minister on July 4.

“The latest government announcement came as a huge shock to me,” Adam said.

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Chesterfield gym owner Adam Bingham does not know why he can't reopen his business.

“We had geared up to hopefully reopen to the public on July 4 but unfortunately this is once again not possible for our industry.

“I feel the decision to open pubs, with a risk of individuals not complying with the one-metre rule once intoxicated, but not to open a facility which supports both physical and mental wellbeing is ludicrous.

“I believe we are part of the solution, not the problem, with of course safe and suitable restrictions.”

When the gym was forced to close in March, Adam froze membership charges to support his customers but admits his mental health suffered and he faced many ‘sleepless nights’ worrying about the future of his business.

“With support from my girlfriend and family I made the decision to use this time in a productive way and refocused my energy in striving to make CSG the best in Chesterfield.

“The gym has undergone a £10,000 refurbishment during lockdown giving it a much-needed facelift.”

Adam says the gym has also already introduced a host of new safety measures to keep customers and staff safe.

He has also introduced a recruitment campaign offering six months’ free rent with no contract to support other leisure industry professionals.

Oliver Dowden, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, said he hopes indoor fitness facilities will be able to welcome back members soon.

“Many people keen to hit the gym and keeping Britain fit is key in the Covid battle,” Mr Dowden said.

“We’ve made lots of progress and I know the steps businesses have taken to make their spaces and equipment safe.

“Subject to public health, our aspiration is to reopen gyms and leisure facilities in mid-July.”

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