Published: 15:29, 19 September 2020
| Updated: 15:47, 19 September 2020
Two indoor play centres are closing for good because of the impact of coronavirus.
Indoor play centres were given the go-ahead to reopen last month, having been closed since March, but the businesses say the new guidance and restrictions handed out by the government make it impossible to stay open.
The Maidstone branch, in the Parkwood Industrial Estate, closed first.
In a statement on its website, the company said: "The new guidance is very in depth and the operation of the centre would not be how you knew it.
"The changes would include much reduced capacity and pre-booked only, changes to the play frame with the removal of any items that are not fixed and new ventilation systems to name a few.
"Without any financial help from the government but landlords demanding full rent and ongoing overhead costs the business is no longer viable."
The Tonbridge branch, on Sovereign Way, announced its sad decision yesterday on Facebook.
The post read: "The new restrictions and guidelines in place to operate soft play centres makes it no longer financially possible.
"Unfortunately without enough financial support to cover overheads the business simply has no money left in the pot.
"Thank you for your support and custom over the years and we thank all of our staff who this affects massively."
The branches were part of a group of indoor play centres in west Kent, warning that closures would occur if they were not given survival money by the Government.
'The business simply has no money left in the pot...'
The firms called for "urgent assistance", arguing they were missing out on aid because they don't qualify for small business grants and bank loans are taking too long to reach them.
Signed by six companies, the letter read: "We appreciate that the government have put measures in place to assist businesses however, such measures are not enough to allow our businesses to survive.
"We are small businesses that are at the heart of communities. We have lost all of our trade due to the lockdown as we all rely on footfall for any kind of income."