UK Parks And Beaches Packed Despite Lockdown Warnings
Parks, beaches and other beauty spots across the United Kingdom were flooded with people yesterday, despite several local authorities urging visitors to stay away.
Last Sunday, Boris Johnson announced that Brits could spend an 'unlimited' amount of time outdoors, travel to where they would like to go outdoors and even meet up with friends or family, as long as they stayed two metres apart.
In response to the new rules, authorities at several tourist hotspots - including Blackpool, the Derbyshire Dales and the Peak District National Park - asked people not to visit as they feared that proper social distancing could not be adhered to if the areas became busy.
Posting on Twitter, Blackpool's tourism body - which has changed the name of its profile page from Visit Blackpool to Do Not Visit Blackpool - wrote: "Ahead of this weekend, we would like to encourage our visitors not to drive to Blackpool for a day trip.
"We can't wait for our grand re-opening when you can once again enjoy all that Blackpool has to offer but, for now, please stay local for your exercise if possible."
The Peak District National Park posted an update yesterday to say the area was 'extremely busy with car parks full and social distancing difficult', before asking people not to travel to the area.
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Meanwhile, things took a decidedly grim turn in the Derbyshire Dales, with reports of people 'using streets as a toilet'.
We appealed to visitors to stay away but our usual hotspots are busy. We also made it clear most facilities - including toilets - remain closed.
Sadly we're getting reports of people using streets as a toilet. Don't.#RespectProtect our communities
- Derbyshire Dales DC (@derbyshiredales) May 16, 2020
The Derbyshire Dales tourism board had previously urged people to consider that it's not 'about what you can now do but rather what you should do'.
Meanwhile, an anti-lockdown gathering took place in Hyde Park. Around 50 people gathered in the park, some holding placards with phrases including ''EX-VACCINATE' and 'freedom over fear'.
Deputy Assistant Commissioner Laurence Taylor, who is heading up the Metropolitan Police's response to the coronavirus pandemic, told Sky News: "With the easing of restrictions we fully expected open spaces to be busy this weekend.
"It was disappointing that a relatively small group in Hyde Park came together to protest the regulations in clear breach of the guidance putting themselves and others at risk of infection.
"Officers once again, took a measured approach and tried to engage the group to disperse.
"They clearly had no intention of doing so, and so it did result in 19 people being arrested, and a further 10 being issued with a fixed penalty notice."
Featured Image Credit: PA