UKSA celebrates ‘huge victory’ as government allows saunas and steamrooms in England to reopen
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UKSA celebrates ‘huge victory’ as government allows saunas and steamrooms in England to reopen

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We consistently pointed out after significant research and testimonials that these spaces were safe to reopen

The UK Spa Association (UKSA) has announced the government has given the green light for saunas and steam rooms to reopen in England.

Spas and wellness facilities can restart these thermal operations with immediate effect, following closure due to the pandemic.

The government has published new guidance around sauna and steamroom operation in the DCMS guidance for Sports and Gym Leisure Facilities (see section 2.1.3).

New requirements include:

  • Maximum capacity being restricted to 50 per cent - for example, a sauna designed for 4 people should only be used by 2 people at the same time
  • Facilities operating with 2m social distancing, including marked seating points in each room
  • Guests being given fixed times and staggered slots to enter the sauna or steamroom
  • Where technically possible, increasing airflow and air changes
  • Ensuring that saunas, steamrooms and any equipment are cleaned regularly, at the beginning and end of the day and at regular intervals in-between, determined by the risk assessment

The news will be welcomed by the industry after months of lobbying to reopen such fundamental components of spa’s offering.

Adam Chatterley, UKSA chair, spoke on the matter, saying: “The UKSA wrote to the Prime Minister, Chancellor, Secretary of State for BEIS, Secretary of State for DCMS, and Chief Medical Officer on several occasions to request a reopening date and to further emphasise the evidence around the safety of saunas and steamrooms.

“We consistently pointed out after significant research and testimonials that these spaces were safe to reopen. We hope you will join us in celebrating this huge victory for our industry.”

Chatterley praised UKSA GM, Helen Grzesk, for her persistence, tenacity and expertise in making this change possible.

In late July, the industry received a false start on reopening these facilities as the government announced that saunas and steamrooms could reopen on 1 August but subsequently reversed this decision.

At the time of writing, spas in Scotland and Wales are still prohibited from operating saunas and steamrooms.

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The UK Spa Association (UKSA) has announced the government has given the green light for saunas and steam rooms to reopen in England.
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