Leisure centres on the Isle of Wight will reopen next week, assuming the Island is considered to be in Tier One for Covid restrictions.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to announce which areas will be covered by the 'Medium', 'High' and 'Very High' tiers, in a briefing tomorrow (Thursday).

Before the second lockdown started in England, on November 5, the Isle of Wight was in the lowest tier (Medium).

  • The County Press will be running a live blog on our website, on Thursday, to update you on any developments

On Monday, Mr Johnson said there was no plan to enter a third lockdown and revealed the rules for the tier system.

Isle of Wight MP Bob Seely revealed he has been talking to Health Secretary Matt Hancock, in a bid to ensure the Isle of Wight's coronavirus figures are treated separately to those in Portsmouth, Southampton and Hampshire.

From next Wednesday, if conditions are right, Isle of Wight Council-run leisure centres in Newport, Sandown and Ryde are likely to be partly reopened (to their previous operating level, pre November 5.)

A spokesperson said: “Subject to the tiering arrangements, council leisure centres at Medina at Newport, The Heights at Sandown and Westridge at Ryde will open in line with the latest guidance.

"This is likely to mean that the Tone Zone gyms, swimming pools and squash courts will open on Wednesday December 2, as they were prior to the latest lockdown.

"The leisure team is currently interpreting the government information to be able to agree opening hours and a programme for December.”

Clare Griffin, who runs the West Wight Sports and Leisure Centre in Freshwater said: "We are very excited and extremely relieved to be able to re-open the Sports Centre on Wednesday.

"It does feel like the Government is finally recognising the benefit our industry has on both physical and mental health and well-being.

"There has been huge pressure applied from the fitness industry and grassroots sports to get them to understand this and I am delighted that we have finally been listened to.

"The standards of hygiene and cleanliness in well run sports centres is extremely high and we are able to control admission and contact between people with relative ease. Sports Centres are safe, healthy places.

"We hope very much that they are not forced to close again.

"The closure has had further impact on our business which is a charity, but we have been encouraged by the support of our members and users, many of whom have continued to pay their fees and/or make donations.

"We are very grateful to them all."