Friends and families urged to enjoy Easter safely in South Tyneside
Families and friends have been asked to enjoy Easter safely in a message from police and council chiefs ahead of the Bank Holiday weekend.
With a varied weather forecast, people will be picking their moments to socialise outdoors over Easter, with many making the most of time of work and the easing of covid restrictions.
From March 29, people have been allowed to mix outdoors in groups of six, or two households, including in private gardens.
Tom Hall, director of public health for South Tyneside, said: “We know many people may be keen to meet up with others for social interaction under the ‘rule of six’ or two households outdoors, particularly over the Easter Bank Holiday weekend which is a time known for family gatherings and celebrations.
"It is vital that people don’t lose sight of what the easing of restrictions aim to achieve. It is critical they continue to follow the national guidelines in place.
“Although the ‘stay at home’ restriction has been lifted, we would still encourage people to minimise travel and avoid places which look too busy, and therefore advise people to make alternative arrangements to enjoy the outdoors in a safer way.
“It is up to everyone to play their part, to act responsibly to help keep themselves, their family and their communities safe. The best way we can ensure cases continue to fall and lockdown measures are not reinstated is to be sensible and continue to follow the Government rules and the guidance on Hands, Face and Space and Fresh Air.”
Northumbria Police also issued a statement asking people to keep covid safety in mind over Easter weekend.
It read: “While the great British weather promises to be as unreliable as ever – we all want to be able to count on one another to do what we can to protect our communities.
“With restrictions easing slightly at the start of this week, we are asking everyone to continue to play their part in helping prevent the spread of Covid-19.
“We are today echoing the comments made by our Assistant Chief Constable Neil Hutchison last Friday when he called on everyone to remain responsible while enjoying the relaxation of the rules.”
The force said officers were grateful to the majority of people who continue to follow the legislation and guidance which is in place, and knew many people will be looking forward to socialising with family and friends.
“By everyone continuing to adhere to the rules in place, it will mean we can enjoy these latest changes as safely as possible,” the statement added.
Officers are anticipating beauty spots will be popular for people to meet up, so there will be extra patrols in parks, the rural countryside and along the coast.
Police also reminded people Bank Holidays are traditionally busier times for force call centres – and urged people to use the ‘Tell Us Something’ page on the Northumbria Police website rather than dialing 101 if possible, adding “in an emergency, always dial 999”.