A gym in North Tyneside has been ordered to close after flouting Covid-19 lockdown rules.
North Tyneside Council has served a prohibition notice to the gym which was in use despite government orders for all gyms to close on 23 March as part of the lockdown to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Following a tip-off, officers from Northumbria Police visited the premises on 12 May and saw two men training inside.
The officers were let inside the locked premises by one of the men who said he was one of gym’s the owners and only there to clean-up.
The other man was found by officers hiding in the gym’s toilet. Both men subsequently admitted they should not have been at the premises.
The police informed the council and a prohibition notice was served on the gym’s owner by Trading Standards Officers on Friday (15 May).
It was the first prohibition notice issued by the council since the lockdown began.
Cllr Carole Burdis, North Tyneside Council’s Cabinet member for community safety, said: “Everyone needs to keep following the government’s guidance to slow the spread of coronavirus, protect the NHS and save lives.
“Our team has provided advice and guidance to hundreds of businesses in the borough to help them follow the coronavirus requirements.
“But where the rules are being deliberately ignored, with the support of the police, we will take enforcement action where necessary.”
Chief Superintendent Janice Hutton, Northern Area Commander, said: “We are extremely grateful to the overwhelming majority of people who have so far adhered to the restrictions.
“However, from the outset we have been clear that we would take the necessary steps to protect our communities. This includes working alongside our valued partners and supporting appropriate action.
“We would urge everyone to continue to follow the restrictions which are in place to ultimately save lives.”
Environmental Health and Trading Standards, services delivered for North Tyneside Council by its partner, Capita, are helping monitor compliance with Covid-19 regulations in the borough.