THE owner of a soft play centre in Clydebank has spoken of his joy after the business was given the green light to open under the latest coronavirus restrictions.

Neil and Catherine Halls were forced to close the doors of their iPlay facility in March last year, and until now, have been unable to re-open.

The couple will welcome families back to the soft play centre today (Wednesday) for the first time in over a year following West Dunbartonshire’s move into Level 1 lockdown rules.

Neil told the Post: “It’s phenomenal to finally have a date.

“I was slightly surprised because I thought we would’ve been kept back but I’m absolutely elated we can finally get the doors open.

“The public response and the sheer volume of enquiries and bookings has been overwhelming. It just shows there is a huge demand for soft play centres and we want to show they aren’t a dangerous place to be.

“It’s a full-time job just answering the phone at the moment.

“We’ve had environmental health officers out and had all of our risk assessments done and they are happy with everything.

“We can’t wait to get the doors open and welcome families back in and see children playing and exercising in a safe, controlled environment.”

The centre has had to put extra safety measures in place to ensure it is Covid compliant ahead of reopening.

Neil added: “We’ve only got a capacity of 40 per cent to start with and we are having to ask people to pre-book soft play, which is new for us.

“Normally if it is a wet day you would just turn up, whereas now we need the public to organise it in advance which helps to implement Test and Protect.

“There will be teething problems because it’s just like opening a business for the first time again.

“We have a brand new booking system in place which has taken a bit of getting used to.

“It’s been such an emotional rollercoaster until now.”