With restrictions on the tourist industry easing, small businesses with spas, hot tubs and pools are beginning to re-open supporting the town’s We’re Open recovery campaign and the council is encouraging these businesses to test their water systems to ensure they are fulfilling their legal duty of care and protecting public health.
A recent PHE study into spa pools and hot tubs found that smaller businesses offering these facilities are hard to contact and may not have the necessary measures in place; these water systems provide the right conditions to support bacteria growth, which can cause significant infectious diseases, such as E.coli and Legionnaires’ Disease.
Sadie Hawson, senior environmental health officer from Cheltenham Borough Council, said: “We’re keen to support our local businesses safe return to the tourism industry and would remind any business offering these facilities to ensure that their water is tested as a priority and periodically thereafter.
“Most will have had their doors closed for a considerable amount of time during which the water may have become stagnant. We’re keen to work with them to ensure that these facilities are safe for their staff and customers and welcome them to contact us with any queries.
“The recent PHE study which we took part in, indicated that whilst public spaces are being well managed, holiday lets with spas and private pools are a concern.”
Further information can be found on the council’s website by searching for ‘Legionella’: https://www.cheltenham.gov.uk/info/65/public_and_environmental_health/1603/covid-19_public_health_guidance_for_businesses.