Some leisure venues to reopen

The Leisure & Cultural Services Department today announced that some of its leisure venues will reopen on February 9.   Outdoor leisure facilities to be reopened include running tracks in sports grounds (for jogging only), tennis courts, bowling greens, gateball courts, Ngau Chi Wan Park Archery Range, Shek O Obstacle Golf Course, cycling facilities, outdoor badminton courts, outdoor table tennis tables, and the sports climbing walls, archery range, golf driving range and practice greens at Tuen Mun Recreation & Sports Centre.   The department will open these facilities after staff at relevant venues have undergone tests for COVID-19 and necessary measures are adopted at reopened sports venues.   The public can book the fee-charging facilities via the Leisure Link Internet Booking Service on February 6.   The Booking Office of the District Leisure Services Offices will resume operation on February 8 and counter bookings and self-service kiosks at the leisure venues will resume operation on the same day of reopening.   According to the relevant regulation, users are required to scan the LeaveHomeSafe QR code or register their names, contact number and the date and time of the visit before being allowed to enter sports premises, for necessary contact tracing if a confirmed case is found.   The department urged members of the public to download and install the LeaveHomeSafe mobile app in advance and scan the QR code with the app before entering.   Members of the public who opt for registering their personal information at the venue are reminded to arrive earlier to avoid delaying their visits as a longer time is required for such registration.   The department will adopt special measures at the leisure facilities, including limiting the number of players permitted to stay in the courts or lanes, limiting the number of joggers in sports grounds and closing spectator stands. Disinfectant carpets and alcohol-based hand rub will be in place and cleaning measures will be stepped up at the venues.   Outdoor sports premises under the department will continue to be open for sub-group activities or training with not more than two people in each sub-group. Each sub-group should keep at least 1.5m apart or with effective partitions in between.   Members of the public are reminded to take note of social distancing. The number of people in group gatherings should not be more than as stipulated by the law. They must wear a mask before and after exercise at outdoor leisure venues.   During the first three days of the Lunar New Year, ie February 12 to 14, the department's parks and playgrounds will remain open, while the above land-based facilities to be reopened will be closed.   But for public convenience, some tennis courts and the archery range at Ngau Chi Wan Park, and the sports climbing walls, archery range, golf driving range and practice greens at Tuen Mun Recreation & Sports Centre will reopen on February 14.   Click here for details of the sports venue opening arrangements.   For refund arrangements in relation to earlier venue closures, the hirer may submit a completed refund application form together with the original booking permit to the reopened leisure venues or a Leisure Link Booking Office at a District Leisure Services Office.   The department said due to the closure of fee-charging facilities a number of times during the epidemic, the number of refund cases received has increased tremendously. It has adopted measures to handle these refund cases as soon as possible but a prolonged processing time for refunds is expected.

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