As the Easter weekend approaches Barnet Council’s Leader, Councillor Dan Thomas, has urged residents to follow social distancing rules when using the borough’s parks and open spaces.
Photo of Barnet Council Leader Councillor Daniel Thomas
With the peak of the pandemic in the UK approaching, and the forecast for warm weather, it is more important than ever that residents adhere to social distancing advice when outside their homes.
Council Leader, Councillor Dan Thomas, said: “The way we live our lives has changed dramatically in recent weeks as the nation pulls together to keep the most vulnerable safe.
“Unfortunately there is a minority of people not taking the social distancing rules seriously enough and that behaviour may lead to people getting seriously ill from coronavirus and dying.
“If you are using one of our parks, please remember to keep your outings short and exercise safely by walking, running or cycling, while staying 2 metres away from others.
"Keep your outings to a maximum of 30-45 minutes, once a day, and this time should be used for exercise, so please do not spend time in our parks sunbathing or picnicking.
“Children’s play areas, park toilets, and other outdoor facilities such as tennis courts, basketball courts and outdoor gyms are already closed to help stop the spread of Covid-19.
“Council officers are currently carrying out daily patrols in addition to the work being carried out by the police to challenge anyone not following the rules.
“For people without gardens, parks offer the only place to exercise outdoors, which is why we want to keep them open as long as possible. We must not have similar scenes to those witnessed in other parts of London in recent days where parks were forced to close.
“Finally, with Easter and Pesach normally a time to spend with family, I would again urge people to follow the government’s recommendations on social distancing and play their part in the national effort to stop the spread of coronavirus.
“Stay at home, protect the NHS, save lives.”
If you are exercising outside you must follow government rules:
- Stay local and use open spaces near to your home where possible – do not travel unnecessarily
- You should only go outside alone or with members of your own household
- Keep at least 2 metres apart from anyone outside your household at all times
- Gatherings of more than two in parks or other public spaces have been banned and the police will enforce this
- If you have a garden, make use of the space for exercise and fresh air
- Take hygiene precautions when you are outside, and wash your hands as soon as you are back indoors
- If walking your dog in areas used by other people, you should walk your dog on a lead to ensure you can safely keep 2 metres away from others.
For the latest information on Barnet council services please visit www.barnet.gov.uk/Covid19