Council 'dismayed' as police called to disperse crowds in Salt Hill Park

Residents are being warned to stay at home after families were seen using play areas and meeting friends in parks during the coronavirus public health crisis.

Police officers had to disperse crowds of people meeting in Salt Hill Park this week despite the Government ordering people on Monday to stay at home unless absolutely necessary.

A council spokeswoman said different families and households were spotted allowing their children to use the playground and exercise equipment with the scene being described as ‘like a bank holiday’.

Police officers have been granted the power to issue fines to people flouting the law.

The council’s parks are open for residents to use for their one period of exercise a day but play areas, green gyms and leisure areas are now closed.

Josie Wragg, chief executive, said: “We are dismayed that some residents think they are exempt from the Government rulings to stay at home and think they won’t get, or won’t pass on, this illness.

“Our amazing green parks are open to be used by our residents to take essential exercise but our green gyms and play parks are firmly closed.

“However, if a small minority of people do not respect everyone’s right to stay safe then we will need to close our green parks too.”

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