All Live Life Aberdeenshire (LLA) sports and cultural facilities will suspend services and close to the public indefinitely from 6pm today.
The closure of fitness suites, theatres, community centres and public halls across the area was announced earlier this week.
Given the developing situation in relation to Covid-19 and in the interest of local communities, this has been extended to include swimming pools, libraries and museums.
Macduff Marine Aquarium will also close, and as with other facilities, staff will remain on duty to cover essential duties, such as caring for animals or maintaining safety and security.
LLA’s Active Schools programme has halted and Duke of Edinburgh expeditions have also been suspended.
All activities and events are cancelled until further notice.
Staff will continue to work behind the scenes and will in some cases be assigned to support other critical Aberdeenshire Council services.
LLA will be suspending all Direct Debits for Active Aberdeenshire members.
No payments will be taken in April and May, with the position to be reviewed at that point in line with national guidance.
If people’s circumstances mean they require a refund for payments already made, for swimming lessons for example, LLA will work to arrange that.
Due to the rapidly changing situation, this may take longer than it would normally.
LLA Interim Head of Service, Avril Nicol, said: “We continue to make decisions in line with national advice and in the interests of our communities, which unfortunately means it is no longer business as usual.
“This is not a decision we take lightly, as we know our communities value the sports and cultural services we provide, but believe it is in the best interests of our staff and our customers.
“We are uncertain when we will be in a position to reopen and trade as normal again, but we will work hard while facilities are closed to make sure we come back with an even better sports and cultural offering when it is safe to do so.
“We believe it is the right thing to do, to protect our teams and customers, to look ahead to the future, and hopefully we can all come back from this stronger.”
LLA is also planning to signpost activities and content which can be enjoyed from the comfort of home.