Seafront to be trial for gym equipment

Seafront to be trial for gym equipment

24 June 2020

NEWRY, Mourne and Down Council has been asked to consider providing outdoor gym equipment across the district, with Newcastle’s seafront suggested as a trial location.

The idea has been suggested by local authority chairwoman Laura Devlin as leisure centres remain closed as part of the series of measures to slow the spread of coronavirus.

The Mournes councillor says that as a result of the closure of leisure centres and other community facilities, a spotlight is being shone on people’s physical and mental well-being.

Cllr Devlin said local people were fortunate to live in such a stunning area, surrounded by greenery and beautiful public outdoor spaces. 

“We are all being more creative and innovative in terms of ensuring that we are getting enough physical activity each week,” she continued. “So many gym owners are now online, as well as the local council promoting more active lifestyles. This must be embraced and encouraged.

“However, as we continue the process of unlocking our district, I see physical activity being at the heart of what we do and how we move forward.”

Cllr Devlin said she has asked council officials to consider providing outdoor gym equipment as part of a future policy.

And while she understands that such projects come with a cost and at a time when the council itself is under financial pressures due to Covid-19, she has asked for some limited equipment along Newcastle promenade.

The council chairwoman said local authority officials could start with a pull-up bar, complete with  dip option, suggesting that this would be really useful and give people the opportunity to do body weights exercises in the outdoors. 

“Such equipment is standard right around the world, particularly in tourist spots,” she explained. “I believe that the council’s key focus should be on keeping people more active and healthy. I want to see us changing and adapting to the environment and the public’s future needs.”