RESIDENTS will be able to splash back into the action today as a swimming pool in Dorchester reopens to the public.

After four long months, swimmers can finally return to the water this weekend at Dorchester Sports Centre. The pool will reopen today for the first time since the centre closed down because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Many people will be able to get back into their regular fitness routines, with exercise classes resuming from today also.

Managed by 1610, a non-profit making leisure trust, Dorchester Sports Centre started its first phase of reopening on 25 July, with a hugely successful opening of the gym. At least 100 members have been attending each day and have been impressed with the measures that have been put in place.

1610’s popular Learn to Swim programme will also resume on Saturday, continuing to provide essential swimming teaching to children and adults of all ages and abilities.

Member Julie Endean said: “Its all very Covid-friendly. Just use common sense and follow the rules. Well done 1610.”

General manager Wayne Long said: “It has been fantastic to welcome our members and local community back to 1610 to continue their health and fitness journey. Our team has worked hard to ensure our centre is safe, fresh and in line with government guidelines and with advice from UK Active, Swim England and Public Health England.

"We are so grateful for the support we have received from customers during these unprecedented times. We look forward to seeing more people this weekend and thanking them for their patience.”

1610 has made all the necessary changes set out by the government to its facilities at Dorchester Sports Centre to ensure customers remain safe. This includes installing a number of hand sanitising stations, bringing in enhanced cleaning procedures, implementing one way systems, providing comprehensive staff training, amending the pool and gym capacities and timetable and installing plastic shields between machines in the gym.

All customers will be required to pre-book online before they attend.

1610 (formerly Somerset Leisure) manages leisure centres based on school sites across Somerset, Devon and Dorset. The trust aims to help people live fuller, richer lives through having an active body and an active mind.