Londoners warned against park picnics and sunbathing in coronavirus lockdown

3 April 2020, 14:48

The temperature is expected to reach 20C this weekend
The temperature is expected to reach 20C this weekend. Picture: Getty

By Matt Drake

Londoners are being urged to stay at home this weekend and respect the government's coronavirus lockdown rules in an open letter from park officials.

The Queen Elizabeth Park organisation, Lee Valley Regional Park Authority, the City of London and the Royal Parks have signed the letter.

It comes as the temperature in the UK is expected to reach up to 20C this weekend which may tempt people to flout government guidance.

The Prime Minister also released a video today urging people not to be "tempted" to go outside.

The letter reads: "Please don't ignore the very clear instructions - go out once a day, stay as local possible, don't gather in groups, keep your two-metre distance, take litter home, and keep dogs under control and on a lead in areas where you are told to do so.

"It's clearly not ok to have picnics, sunbaths, cycle where is not allowed or confront those putting themselves at risk to keep these spaces open. By working together and being sensible we can make sure that our great parks and riversides play their vital role in keeping Londoners as fit and healthy as possible during these challenging times.

"Don't let this weekend's fantastic weather do more harm than good."

Mr Johnson, who is continuing to self-isolate after testing positive for Covid-19 last week, warned Britons to “stick with the guidance” in a bid to help ease the pressure on the NHS.

The Prime Minister said he understood “everybody may be getting a bit stir crazy”, particularly if they have children in the house, and people may want to “hang out” over the weekend.

In a video published on Twitter, he urged people not to be "tempted" to go outside in the hot weather predicted this weekend.

He said: "One quick thing to everybody thinking about this weekend, and what may be some fine weather.

"I reckon a lot of people are starting to think this is all going on for quite a long time and they would rather be getting out there and particularly if they've got kids.

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"There may be just a temptation to get out there hang out and start to break the regulations.

"And I just urge you not to do that.

“Please, please, stick with the guidance now.

“This country has made a huge effort, a huge sacrifice, done absolutely brilliantly will in delaying the spread of the virus.

“Let’s stick with it now.”

Downing Street said that ministers were prepared to bring in further measures if people ignored the official advice.