Police in Wales urge English people to check lockdown rules after turning away more than 1,000 cars

·2-min read
Waterfall in Brecon Beacons National Park, Wales, UK
Waterfall in Brecon Beacons National Park, Wales, UK

Police in Wales have turned away more than 1,000 cars from a beauty spot in just two days, prompting them to urge English visitors to check the country’s lockdown rules.

Dyfed-Powys Police said they have stopped tourists from as far as London who had travelled to a picturesque area in the Brecon Beacons known as “waterfall country” last weekend.

In England people can now travel an unlimited distance for exercise and to access beauty spots but Wales still has a five-mile limit on non-essential journeys - something the force said many of the drivers stopped claimed they did not know.

This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.

Offenders include a doctor from London who travelled to Brecon to buy lamb, a group from Devon who made a 350-mile round trip to Wisemans Bridge, Pembrokeshire, to “look at the beach”, and a birthday party from Hemel Hempstead in Hertfordshire, who travelled to Elan Valley, Powys, for a barbecue.

The force said 72% of people reported for breaches of coronavirus restrictions in Powys, Mid Wales, since March 27 had been from outside the police force area.

A spokeswoman said: “Police in Powys are reminding people to check the rules before they travel, as tourists from the Midlands, London and Bristol continue to visit despite lockdown restrictions.”

She added: “Many of those stopped claimed they thought the rules around travel were the same as in England, while others had deliberately flouted them.”

Superintendent Steve Davies said: “Our officers have worked hard to engage with the public at every opportunity throughout these unprecedented times by explaining what we are doing and why, and encouraging people to make the best choices to protect public health in Wales.

“But where people have clearly flouted the rules we have dealt with them appropriately and issued fines.”

In Wales fines for repeated breaches of lockdown regulations start at £60 but double for each repeated offence to a maximum of £1,920.

Wales’ three national parks, including Snowdon in North Wales, the Elan Valley in Mid Wales, and the Pembrokeshire coast in West Wales all remain closed to the public, along with all National Trust car parks and properties.

Coronavirus: what happened today

Click here to sign up to the latest news, advice and information with our daily Catch-up newsletter

Read more about COVID-19

How to get a coronavirus test if you have symptoms
How easing of lockdown rules affects you
In pictures: How UK school classrooms could look in new normal
How public transport could look after lockdown
How our public spaces will change in the future

Help and advice

Read the full list of official FAQs here
10 tips from the NHS to help deal with anxiety
What to do if you think you have symptoms
How to get help if you've been furloughed