Following the Government’s most recent update, Sheffield City Council has reviewed facilities across the city’s parks and is reopening car parks with immediate effect, and allowing the use of bowling greens.

The updated guidance states that people can spend more time in parks and meet, with social distance, with one person from another household. The guidance also states that it is ok to use outdoor sports courts or facilities, with members of your household, or one other person while staying two metres apart.

Sheffield’s parks grounds have remained open throughout lockdown to allow daily exercise, but all other facilities were closed. Since the restrictions changed Sheffield City Council has been reviewing facilities within parks to assess what can be safely reopened.

Tennis courts were reopened on 21 May, and now car parks and bowls will also be in use again.

Toilets, cafes, club houses, playgrounds and other multi-use games areas remain closed. The council is working with cafe owners and lease holders, as well as ice cream van operators, to support them towards safely reopening in early June.

Councillor Mary Lea, Cabinet Member for Culture, Parks and Leisure at Sheffield City Council, said: “We kept all our parks grounds open to allow people the many benefits of daily exercise in outdoor green spaces, on their doorsteps, but closed all other facilities to keep people safe.

“Since the Government updated restrictions around time spent in parks and relaxing rules on essential travel, we have been reviewing all our parks’ facilities to enable reopening of those where we feel safe social distancing can still happen.

“After opening our tennis courts yesterday, we are now also able to reopen all our car parks and bowling greens.

“However, while we want people to enjoy their time outside and have a little freedom, fun and fitness, I must also stress that the risks are still high. Everyone must take responsibility and follow the social distancing rules that are in place to protect us all.

“We hope to be able to reopen other facilities where and when it is safe to do so, but this can only happen if everyone upholds their part in keeping to safe distances and practicing good hygiene.

“If you are going to be out and about please consider avoiding some of our typically busier parks, go explore somewhere new and have a healthy and happy bank holiday weekend.”

All car parks in Sheffield’s parks, green spaces and woodlands are now open for use. All car parks are free of charge at this time. People will be notified in advance when parking charges come back in to effect.

Bowling greens across Sheffield’s parks will now be available for use, subject to strict safety measures.

Signs have been placed at each location with guidelines that must be followed at all Sheffield Parks bowling greens, to allow users to bowl safely and adhere to the Government’s social distancing guidelines.

The guidelines for use are:

  • When entering and using the green you must remain 2m apart from anyone who is not from your household at all times
  • No buildings, toilets or welfare facilities will be available and they must remain locked
  • You can only bowl by yourself; or with up to four members from your household; or with one person from outside your household (continue to follow Government advice)
  • You must use your own bowls, jack and bowls mat
  • A maximum of one jack will be allowed on the green
  • Whilst walking on the green during your game, ensure social distancing is adhered to at all times
  • Good hygiene should be practiced. You should clean your hands before and after playing. No washing facilities will be available, users must supply their own hand gels and dispose appropriately
  • If Sheffield City Council staff or contractors are working on the greens or surrounding areas no play must be undertaken until advised.

Prior to playing, all members should book via their bowling club.

Anyone who has any symptoms of the coronavirus illness (Covid-19), however mild, should stay at home. Anyone listed by the Government as being in the at risk group, should stay at home.

For all the latest information sign up to the council’s COVID-19 email updates. You can also follow Sheffield Parks and Countryside on twitter, Facebook and Instagram.