Welsh police stop couple crossing border to deliver Christmas presents to family

29 November 2020, 09:48

South Wales Police say they stopped 110 vehicles in the first 24 hours of their operation.
South Wales Police say they stopped 110 vehicles in the first 24 hours of their operation. Picture: PA

By Joe Cook

A couple travelling to Cardiff to deliver Christmas presents were amongst over 100 vehicles stopped by police on the Welsh border in the first 24 hours of an enhanced police operation.

Police say the couple told officers they were heading to Cardiff to give family Christmas presents and were found to be “travelling in breach of Covid legislation”.

A group of nine people “travelling in convoy to visit friends in university” were also stopped.

People from “high-risk” areas outside Wales are prohibited from travelling into the country under Welsh Government rules.

South Wales Police say they stopped 110 vehicles in the first 24 hours of their operation, after the new rules came into force on Friday.

The force handed out 12 fixed penalty notices in the first day and warned a further 15 people, instructing them to leave Cardiff.

Read more: Welsh First Minister says Christmas plan to relax Covid rules will increase infections

The force did not say if the couple delivering presents were fined.

Police were given the temporary extra powers following concerns that groups of people from locked-down areas of the UK where pubs and bars are closed helped pack out Cardiff city centre's streets last weekend.

South Wales Police said alongside the vehicle checks, they have had more officers on duty, and these changes will be in place until 5pm on Sunday - covering the final weekend of England's lockdown.

Read more: Mass testing reaches Cynon Valley as major coronavirus programme gets underway

Read more: More than 150 arrested as anti-lockdown protesters descend on London

Cardiff and Vale of Glamorgan Chief Superintendent Wendy Gunney thanked “the vast majority of people who are enjoying their weekend with caution and within the confines of the existing regulations”.

However he warned: “Those not adhering to the rules are continuing to put others at increased risk.

“The measures which are in place are in place for a reason. Our checks will continue throughout the weekend, and anybody blatantly flouting the rules, which have been made very clear, face being fined.”