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Reaching for new heights - Edinburgh Leisure reopens Europe's largest climbing arena

Edinburgh Leisure | Monday 21st September 2020 0:05am

Reaching for new heights - Edinburgh Leisure reopens EICA: Ratho

Following the reopening of six of its leisure venues on Monday, 14 September, Edinburgh Leisure reopened its Edinburgh International Climbing Arena at Ratho today, Monday, 21st September 2020.

A climbers’ paradise and Europe’s largest indoor climbing arena, booking went live for climbing members at 9pm on Thursday, 17 September, and to non-members on Friday, 18 September.  Members will be able to book climbing sessions eight days in advance, while for non-members, it’s seven days.

Customers wishing to book the gym facilities at EICA: Ratho, can book three days in advance for members, and two days in advance for non-members – which is the same terms as at the other six Edinburgh Leisure venues, which recently opened.

Emma Ogilvie-Hall, Manager at EICA: Ratho said:  “We know our climbers have missed the fantastic facilities at Ratho, and we’ve missed them and it's great to welcome them back.

“Like our other venues, things are different but our climbers are still guaranteed the warm Edinburgh Leisure welcome. Everyone is having to adapt to very different circumstances but the feedback from customers to the reopening of our six other venues have been very positive to the changes that we have put in place, which after all, are here for the health and safety of our staff and customers.”

The main changes that customers are seeing are:

Only climbing on the walls and bouldering in the main arena is available, as will use of the gym.  However, the bouldering room remains closed.

Other services remaining closed for the time include Clip ‘n Climb: the two cafés and Scrambles soft-play.  Edinburgh Leisure will be following Government guidelines when considering the reopening these services.

  • No coaching is available but an experienced climber can bring in two guests.  These can be signed in and paid for on arrival but payment will be cashless.
  • Safety signage guidance is on display throughout the venues.
  • Additional sanitisation stations have been installed throughout the venue for use before and after each visit.
  • Customers need to book all climbing sessions in advance.
  • Sessions have been changed to reduce congestion in the building.   Customers will be able to book in for either a morning or afternoon session.
  • The climbing sessions will run from 10:00 – 15:30 and 16:00 – 21:00 (Monday to Friday), and 9:00 – 12:30 and 13:00 to 17:00 (Saturday and Sunday)
  • Equipment can be hired online at the time of booking or in person on site but payment will be cashless.  
  • Climbers will need to arrive ‘climb-ready’. Change facilities will not be available for use. There will also be a reduced number of customer toilets. 

    An Edinburgh Leisure spokesperson explained: "We're delighted to have re-opened EICA: Ratho. As you can imagine, bringing Edinburgh Leisure's diverse range of venues and services 'back to life' in a COVID-19 environment has been a big and complex task.  Our number one goal has been to provide our customers with a clean, safe and enjoyable Edinburgh Leisure experience."

    Edinburgh Leisure, like every trust in Scotland, is facing huge financial challenges. They continue to lobby the Government for financial support for the sector to ensure the sector survives and can continue to contribute to the country's health and wellbeing. 

    June Peebles, CEO of Edinburgh Leisure said: "Edinburgh Leisure is committed to 'building back better' to a sustainable Edinburgh Leisure and continue making a positive impact to the citizens of Edinburgh's health and wellbeing - as we have done for the last 22 years.  Never before has health and wellbeing so important. And Edinburgh Leisure remains committed to supporting the people of Edinburgh to be active and enjoy good health."

    Edinburgh Leisure is a charity dedicated to creating opportunities for everyone to lead more active, healthy lives. They do this by running over 30+ sports and leisure facilities across the city and deliver their Active Communities programme, which helps improve the lives of people affected by health conditions, poverty, inequalities and disabilities. 

    For more information:  https://www.edinburghleisure.co.uk/venues/edinburgh-international-climbing-arena

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