Outdoor sport and leisure facilities to open again as COVID restrictions lift

The next step of the Government’s roadmap out of lockdown will come into effect from Monday 29 March.

Outdoor gatherings (including in private gardens) of either 6 people or two households will be allowed, making it easier for friends and families to meet outside. As well as this, outdoor sports facilities will re-open again and people will be able to take part in formally organised outdoor sports.

In line with Government guidelines:

  • Outdoor sport for adults and children is permitted in larger numbers, provided it is formally organised (for example, by a national governing body or a qualified instructor) and follows COVID-secure guidance.
  • Organised sport and supervised children’s sport and physical activity can take place outdoors in any number, but people should maintain the rules on social contact before and after sporting activity. This applies to organised outdoor (individual and team) sports, outdoor exercise classes, organised sports participation events and outdoor licensed physical activity.

Where sport is not formally organised, people can use these facilities in pairs or in a group of up to six people, or with members of up to two households, in line with national guidance.

The following will be opening in Southampton from Monday 29 March:

  • Outdoor fitness equipment
  • Lawn bowls
  • Multi-use Games Areas (MUGA)
  • Sports pitches
  • Tennis Courts

Dr Debbie Chase, Director of Public Health at Southampton City Council said:

“We all know how important exercise is for our physical and mental wellbeing and we’re fortunate to have such great open spaces with many outdoor sport facilities here in Southampton. As we begin to take the next steps of the Government’s roadmap, reopening things such as outdoor sport and leisure facilities gradually, it’s important that we continue to keep following guidance while vaccines are rolled out at speed because COVID has not disappeared.”

When using outdoor equipment or facilities, please remember to:

  • Stay safe, exercise apart – ensure you are 2m away from anyone not in your household
  • Wash and sanitise your hands more often than usual
  • Not touch your face
  • Cough or sneeze into a tissue, or your arm if a tissue isn’t available

Southampton City Council will also be taking over the running of the municipal golf course on 1 April. Golfers will be welcomed back to the renowned parkland course when it re-opens on 30 April, following essential drainage, ground maintenance work and improvements to the greens.