Re-opening: Frequently Asked Questions

Re-opening: Frequently Asked Questions

Sandwell Leisure Trust are delighted to announce an initial phased re-opening of some leisure facilities from Thursday 6th August. 

Our phased re-opening of pre-bookable fitness class and gym sessions be available at; Portway Lifestyle Centre, Wednesbury Leisure Centre, Haden Hill Leisure Centre and Tipton Sports Academy. Pre-bookable lane swim sessions will also be available at Haden Hill and Wednesbury Leisure Centres pools at selected times. Members will also be able to participate in pre-recorded and pre-scheduled online fitness sessions. Fitness and swimming timetables will be released next week.

We will be delivering services in accordance with Covid-19 secure guidelines and are doing everything possible to open safely and be ready for when you are. On your first visit you will notice a number of changes supporting social distancing and Covid-19 secure guidance. Please view our useful video of what you can expect and what is expected of you to ensure you can enjoy and our staff can support a safe experience. 

We all want to return to normal and enjoy our leisure time as quickly and safely as possible, but we really need your patience and support to ensure we are here to provide you with the service you love.

We have prepared a list of frequently asked questions and answers to help and support you... 

How will SLT be controlling attendances ?

As part of Covid-19 Secure re-opening measures and leading industry guidance, online pre-booking will be required for all fitness classes, gym sessions, lane swimming sessions and other activities to manage attendances.

SLT members will be able to pre-book 48 hours ahead from 6.30am for all activities. For example a member will be able to book on Monday at 6.30am for a class on Wednesday evening. Members can cancel a pre-booked session online up to 2 hours before the start of each session. 

How do I book a gym session, fitness class or lane swim session?

You can book all sessions online at and simply select book online.

We will be releasing a How to book a session, support guide soon.

What happens if I can’t attend a pre-booked session? 

Cancellations with less than 2 hours notice before the session, none attendance, or not checking in will result in the following:

A charge (based on the cost of the session) will be incurred and you will be unable to pre-book any further sessions until payment is made for this outstanding balance of non-attendance.

To clear this balance please call 0300 012 0121 and select the centre of your booking.

We want to ensure everyone has the opportunity to pre-book and access available sessions.

Can non-members still come? 

Non-members will be able to book 24 hours ahead from 6.30am. For example a non-member will be able to book on Tuesday at 6.30am for a class on Wednesday evening. Non-members must pay and pre-book in advance for their activity, refunds are not available for any cancellations. 

Will my membership be reduced in price?

No, many service providers have had to increase charges as a result of additional costs resulting from new Covid-19 secure procedures. SLT will maintain membership fees without any increases passed onto you as a result of Covid-19. Members will also be able to participate in pre-recorded and pre-scheduled online fitness sessions.

How many sessions can you book a day?

Each member can book one gym session, one fitness class and or one lane swim session per day. 

How long are the sessions in gym & classes?

Classes will be 60, 45 or 30 minutes and gym sessions will be 60 minutes to support effective social distancing measures, managing attendance numbers and in accordance with the latest Covid-19 secure government guidance.

How can I check opening hours and session times?

Timetables and latest updates will be available on and updated regularly. 

Why are only certain centres open?

This is phase one of our re-opening. We will be re-opening centres in a gradual and phased approach as confidence and attendances increase. This will be kept under continuous review and will be subject to the latest guidance and the financial viability to deliver those services. 

Why can’t I see my favourite class?

We will re-open in a phased and gradual way to ensure customer confidence, safety and operating costs are strictly managed. As demand and attendances increases we will review our programmes accordingly. Please let us know if there are sessions you want to see and our team will consider if these can be provided. Please email any suggestions to or contact us via our social media channels.

Will the changing rooms be open for use?

Initially only swimming pool changing rooms will be open, this will be for swimmers only. Customers attending other pre-booked activities must attend ready to participate. 

When will memberships become live again?

When SLT re-opens all memberships will be reactivated and made live, members can choose to continue to suspend their membership and either pay as they go for pre-booked activities or wait until they are ready to return. 

When will my first direct debit be taken?

Direct debit payments will be taken from September on your agreed date of either 1st or 12th of month. Members will be able to pre-book and access sessions during August at no cost. This also supports those members who were unable to access services for the full month of March. 

Many service providers have had to increase charges as a result of additional costs resulting from new Covid-19 secure procedures. SLT will maintain membership fees without any increases passed onto you as a result of Covid-19. 

I’d like to come back but I’m not ready?

Don’t worry, please email who will suspend your membership for as long as you need to.

Will swimming be open and if so at what centres?

Some pre-bookable lane swimming will commence in the early phases of re-opening. This will be kept under continuous review as customer confidence and demand returns. Programmes and availability will be updated on The re-opening of all facilities including swimming pools will also be determined by financial viability to do so and will remain under regular review to adapt and change as required.

Is all swimming bookable all of the time?

Yes, all activities are pre-bookable online and paid for in advance for non-members.

How long will swimming sessions be ?

All sessions will be 45 or 60 minutes in duration. Changing rooms will be open however all customers are asked to come arrive “pool ready – swimming costume under clothes” to reduce the amount of time in the changing area. There will be a designated changeover time between each session.

How will lane swimming operate?

Social distancing measures will be maintained inline with Covid-19 Secure Guidance. Pre-booking will also maintain the strict limiting of attendances per session.

When will swimming lessons (Swim Academy restart)?

We are reviewing all the latest guidance for the safe operation of swimming lessons and we will provide further updates when lessons will re-start. All pre-paid lessons not delivered will be credited back and places will be held. The current industry view on swimming lessons is providing there is not a second peak, that lessons may return with schools in September. SLT will follow all the latest leading industry guidance including Swim England. Further updates will be provided over the coming weeks.

Will it be safe in the water for swimming lessons?

Yes, swimming pool water is extremely safe, chlorination kills all bacteria including the Covid-19 virus on contact. 

As long as social distancing is maintained and Covid-19 Secure operation is followed, swimming lessons can be re-introduced. Further updates will be provided over the coming weeks when lessons will restart.

When can our club restart their sessions?

Club sessions can restart providing social distancing measures are maintained and pool opening operation is financially viable. Clubs must also adhere to strict Covid-19 Secure Swim England guidance.

Why are you not opening on the 25th July?

We are making all the preparations to re-open safely and in accordance with Covid-19 Secure guidance. Facilities will re-open in a phased and gradual way following all testing, checks and staff training is completed. Staff and customer confidence is critical and we must ensure we take every measure to re-open safely and confidently.

When will the athletics track be open?

The latest guidance states that no more than 6 people can exercise together outdoors. We are awaiting further industry and governing body guidance as it develops as some other sports such as cricket and football training are now permitted.

When will you be open for racket sports? 

We are awaiting further guidance on indoor sports and will consider this in-line with our review of the phased re-opening of facilities.

Do I need to wear a face mask? 

There is no current requirement for customers to wear face masks at leisure centres. Pre-booking will be required to strictly manage and control attendances and social distancing measures must be adhered to. SLT is following the latest UK Active and Covid-19 Secure guidance on the safe operation of facilities. This will also be kept under review and inline with the latest Public Health and Government updates.