Ainsdale Beach in Southport

Grassroots sports, golf, outdoor gyms and other open air activities will resume from Monday (29 March) as the next set of lockdown restrictions are eased. 

However, as Government advice turns from ‘stay at home’ to ‘stay local’, Sefton Council will repeat its warnings from last year for visitors from outside our area to stay away. 

Last Summer, after the first national Covid lockdown ended, crowds of people from all over the country swarmed to beaches including Southport, Ainsdale and Formby. 

Sefton Council has however put provisions in place to deal with any extra potential visitors including traffic signs, more cleansing and staffing, and temporary toilets along the coastline. 

The changes are being put in place by Green Sefton, which is part of Sefton Council. 

They said: “You will be aware that from Monday we will be entering the next phase in the gradual relaxation of National Lockdown restrictions.

“Some restrictions to limit the risk of infection from Covid-19 are therefore to be lifted as part of stage 1 of the government’s Roadmap. Once again this has some impact on the services provided by Green Sefton and I wanted to highlight the changes as it affects our visitors, volunteers and staff.

 

Visiting Parks, Coast and other Greenspaces

 

Overall, our sites remain freely open and accessible for exercise. You can go outside for recreation and exercise in a local public outdoor place:

  • adhering to the rule of 6 or 2 households
  • organised outdoor sport is allowed

The government messaging is changing from ‘say at home’ to ‘stay local’, and so our external communications will reflect this accordingly, including discouraging visitors from travelling from afar to visit our sites. However, anticipating that good weather will attract visitors anyway, we are putting into place actions similar to last year as part of our Visitor Action Plan, including traffic signage, additional cleansing and staffing, temporary toilets on the coast etc.

 

Volunteering in Parks, Coast and Greenspaces

 

Volunteer group activities can restart again in line with the above. Gatherings of more than six people are not permitted unless they are from two households only. Activities which are likely to be appropriate include:

  • Litter picking
  • Gardening activities
  • Species and habitat surveying and management activities

However, to ensure that transmission of Covid19 remains minimal, we would refer groups to previous Covid 19 risk assessments:

  • sharing of tools and equipment is discouraged
  • social distancing must still be observed
  • avoid busy areas and times
  • short sessions
  • stay local

Please liaise with the Community Engagement Team when developing your activities, but do note there may be delays in responses and/ or support while we deal with the many issues facing us right now.

 

Outdoor Facilities that will re-open

 

  • Golf Courses – Bootle and Southport courses will reopen for up to 4-ball golf booked in advance via the on site shops
  • Outdoor Gyms – All outdoor gyms will re-open and will be recommissioned over the coming days.
  • Tennis Courts / Basketball Courts – these areas will re-open and court times for tennis can be booked via the following link: https://clubspark.lta.org.uk/SeftonParksTennis
  • Grassroots Sport – including football, the use of playing pitches will also now restart. We have communicated separately to leagues and clubs in more detail but:
  1. We ask that no spectators accompany players to adult fixtures
  2. We ask that only 1 parent or carer, from the same household/support bubble as the child, attends at junior fixtures.
  3. Spectators to junior fixtures must socially distance, we advise face coverings are worn and that a distance of 2m is made from the touchline.
  4. People should seek to attend at fixtures within 15 minutes of kick off – not sooner. Please do not arrive too early, as your attendance may conflict with other teams seeking to leave the venue and would increase the chances of contact with others/ infection.
  5. All visitors, including spectators are asked to register your attendance using the QR codes on display at the entrance to changing rooms. These remain open only for officials and toilets.

Park Buildings and Pavilions

These continue to remain closed at this stage.

 

Allotments

 

– our allotment sites remain open to tenants who must limit their activity only to their own plots and adhere to rules on the control of Covid-19 which are displayed at entrance gates including the rule of 6 mentioned earlier.

– Viewings for new plot holders will begin on 1st April

 

More Information

 

More information on Coronavirus can be found on our website at:

https://www.sefton.gov.uk/coronavirus

 

We all appreciate the health and well being benefits of spending time outdoors (especially right

now), but our resources will be stretched again during these challenging times, so if you do visit

our sites please take extra effort to care for our environment by either taking litter home or

using the bins provided.

 

If you have further queries, please email greensefton@sefton.gov.uk.

Do you have a story for Stand Up For Southport? Please message Andrew Brown via Facebook here or email me at: mediaandrewbrown@gmail.com

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