CONFUSION remains around when leisure centres will reopen in Ryedale.

Everyone Active operates Derwent Swim & Fitness Centre in Norton, Ryedale Swim and Fitness Centre, along with Ryedale Sports Centre, in Pickering, on behalf of Ryedale District Council (RDC).

Earlier this month the government outlined the measures that will allow indoor gyms, swimming pools and sports facilities to reopen.

However, while Derwent Valley Swimming Club has been told lessons could resume in September, a date for public use is yet to be confirmed.

Helen Robinson, chairperson of the swimming club, said: “We were informed the pool intends to open up for lessons only from September which would include the swimming club being able to resume.

“I was surprise to hear therefore that the information at present appears to be that the swimming pool doesn’t know when it is going to be able to reopen.

“Swimming is not just a for of exercise but a life skill and there will be a lot of children out there who do not attend lessons but are missing out on going down to the pool with their parents and learning to swim.”

Helen added: “Also, for a lot of older people, swimming is their main form of exercise as it is kindest on the body.

“It is clear that even from what we have been told, that it will open in September for lessons only, those people who use it for vital exercise, will not be able to do that for the foreseeable future.

“I am not clear why, if it can open to lessons with very young children, it cannot also open to the general public, obviously with restrictions for social distancing, etc, in place.”

Martin Miles, area contract manager at Everyone Active, said: “We have taken a phased approach to the reopening of our facilities, so we can effectively manage social distancing within the centres and ensure the safety of both our colleagues and customers.

“We’ve therefore reopened gyms and group exercise studios initially and will be reopening swimming pools over the coming weeks.”

Martin added: “We are still liaising with all our local authority partners, including Ryedale District Council (RDC), on the specific plans for reopening each of our centres.

“The dates for when we reopen our leisure facilities across the district are dependent on these discussions, however we hope to be able to confirm a date soon.”

A spokesperson from RDC said: “We all want the same thing – to reopen the leisure centres as soon as possible.

“We are working constructively with Everyone Active, which runs our facilities, and are considering their request for significant financial support.

“We are making progress and will do everything we can to clarify the future position as quickly as possible.”