Preparations underway to reopen Mansfield services

Outdoor gym equipment in Titchfield Park
Preparations underway to reopen Mansfield services

Mansfield District Council is working to reopen more services and facilities following the Government's announcement to further relax COVID-19 social distancing measures where it is considered safe.

Outdoor gyms and play areas were among facilities that Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced would be able to reopen from 4 July provided they followed social distancing and other safety measures to help prevent the spread of the virus.

The council is beginning inspections of play equipment and outdoor gyms so that they can be used again from 4 July, subject to Government guidance on cleaning the equipment. Further announcements will follow in due course confirming when these facilities are to be re-opened.  

It is also seeking to increase the number of stalls at Mansfield Market but is aiming to keep closer to a 2m social distancing level to encourage more confidence in the public to return to the town centre.

The council continues to work with Nottinghamshire County Council and Mansfield BID to help cafes, and licensed venues to open safely next month. 

Applications for pavement licences will be considered by the highways authority, which will take into consideration public safety and access. 

Environmental Health teams continue to provide advice to businesses and are signposting them to relevant guidance.

Executive Mayor Andy Abrahams said: "Mansfield people have been really responsible in the way they have adhered to government guidance to curb the spread of the virus and this district has one of the lowest rates of infection in the county.

"We really hope they continue to be sensible so we can maintain the low rate of infection but at the same time, we hope they also have the confidence to get back to normal ways of living and feel they can get out and support the local shops and businesses."

There are no plans to reopen the museum until after the school summer holidays and the council is working on a risk assessment to reopen safely in September.

The theatre, which is usually closed over the summer anyway, will remain closed until later in the year and will reopen with a revised programme – if it is considered safe to do so. 

Four Seasons multi-storey car park is due to reopen on Tuesday 30 June with Shopmobility set to return the following week. Shoppers are advised to follow the council on Facebook @mymansfielduk for updates. 

The council's car parks are free to use until September but all other terms and conditions still apply.

Customers need to be aware that parking enforcement will start on Monday 29 June so they need to follow time limits in short, medium and long stay locations, only park in allocated bays and to park in disabled bays only if they have a blue badge permit. 

Hayley Barsby, Chief Executive of the council, said: "Public safety remains paramount in how the council emerges from the lockdown.

"The Government guidance is just that, so we will only reopen facilities when we have a proper plan in place and feel confident we can do so safely.

"Regardless of any safety measures we put in place, individually we all ultimately rely on each other to be careful and sensible in how we go about our everyday lives. 

"Things like regularly washing our hands and keeping our distance from others continues to be an important part of our daily routines."

Mansfield District Leisure Trust (MDLT), supported by teams from across Serco, has a plan in place for the reopening of leisure centres as soon as the Government gives the green light. 

Andrew Smith, Contract Manager for MDLT, said: “The safety of people using and working at our centres is paramount and our plans reflect this.

"Before lockdown, we already had social distancing measures in place and we’ll be re-introducing those and further measures to ensure people are able to safely exercise and work in our facilities.

"We’re confident our stringent planning is going to pay off, ensuring customers and colleagues are able to easily adapt to our new way of operating.

“During the initial phase, we will not be re-opening our River Maun Recreation Centre. This decision was taken primarily from a safety, social distancing viewpoint.”

The council has also received several enquiries regarding its football pitches and is looking at how it can reopen them for training purposes only. 

There are no plans to reopen the Civic Centre and council staff that can work remotely will continue to work from home for the foreseeable future.

People can still contact the council on 01623 463463 or by emailing mdc@mansfield.gov.uk (link opens in new window) or via the council's social media channels.
 
Regularly updated details about the council services during the coronavirus situation can be found at https://www.mansfield.gov.uk/coronavirus-covid-19-1/services-update/1 (link opens in new window).

 

Published: June 26th 2020