JUST two months after it was told it could reopen, The Jungle soft play centre has been ordered to close as Warrington moves into the 'very high' Covid alert level.

Sarah and Paul Lott, who own the family attraction in Pinners Brow Retail Park, feel the sector has been 'forgotten' as Warrington Borough Council's deal with the government allows leisure centres, gyms, fitness centres and even trampoline parks to remain open.

Meanwhile, soft play centres, as well as bookmakers, casinos and pubs which do not serve meals, must close.

READ MORE> Warrington's journey to Tier 3

It was originally thought that Warrington would enter tier three today, Thursday, meaning Sarah and Paul rushed to rearrange their ticketed Halloween events to avoid disappointing countless families.

They were devastated when this date was pushed forward to midnight on Monday.

Taking to social media, the pair announced: "We spent all night into the early hours of this morning re-arranging our four Halloween events to make sure that 200 children could have a fantastic time, all for nothing.

"We will arrange refunds for everyone, including people who rushed to support us last night by buying tickets for Tuesday and Wednesday.

"We are determined for children to have the chance to enjoy some Halloween fun in The Jungle so we have added two additional events from 6-8pm on Sunday, October 25 and Monday, October 26."

Speaking on Monday before her business had to close, Sarah, from Culcheth, said: "There's a lot of work which has gone into the last two days.

"We thought we were lucky when other areas started going into tier three and had to close but then we went straight in too.

"We are all devastated.

"It's not going with what the evidence says - we're closing between sessions and cleaning all the time, we have a fogging machine and we've never had any notification of positive cases through track and trace.

"We want to know what money will be available to us.

"We're not a big business, we've spent 15 years building it up and we just feel forgotten."

Before the coronavirus pandemic, The Jungle employed more than 30 people from the nearby area, providing soft play and parties for children.

After being forced to close at the start of lockdown, it was struggling to stay afloat and was unable to access a Government grant due to its high rateable value.

The Jungle is supporting a petition to keep soft play centres open during tier three restrictions which can be found at change.org/p/government-local-politicians-keep-soft-play-areas-open-during-tier-3-lockdown.