Trafford Council say they have closed down an Altrincham gym today for breaking the government’s coronavirus rules – but the owner of one of the businesses operating from the gym says he has been the victim of mistaken identity.
A press release from the council claims that Environmental Health officers from the council had received complaints from members of the public that the gym on Blue Chip Business Park in Broadheath – home to Atlantic Fitness and Next Level Personal Training – was still open.
The officers, along with representatives from Greater Manchester Police, visited the gym today and, the council claims, issued Paul Boys – who rents space within the gym for his Next Level Personal Training business – with a prohibition notice to close for continuing to trade following the new lockdown restrictions introduced on November 5th. The new rules required all gyms to close until December 2nd.
However, speaking to Altrincham Today, Boys said the gym had been the victim of mistaken identity and that he had been issued with no such closing-down order.
Boys said: “They asked to come in, I let them in, they could see it was closed, there was no lights or music, and then we said goodbye. They were satisfied. I asked if I was breaking the rules by being there myself, but they said no. The police were there throughout.”
Boys rents space for his Next Level Personal Training business within the Atlantic Fitness gym, which is actually owned by Darren Harrison.
Boys was also fined £10,000 yesterday for organising an anti-lockdown protest in Manchester city centre on Sunday, a penalty he will be contesting, according to the MEN.
Cllr Mike Freeman, Trafford Council’s Executive Member for Public Safety and Governance, had said earlier: “This gym has clearly broken all the rules by staying open and this is not acceptable.
“We will not tolerate this kind of behaviour from any business which fails to follow the rules and puts people’s heath at risk. If you are open against the rules, we will close you down it is as simple as that.
“Trafford Council has made it a priority to keep people as safe as possible in our borough. These are difficult times, but the rules must be followed to ensure that the virus does not spread.”