Can you go to the beach during lockdown? UK coronavirus rules explained
20 May 2020, 12:04
The latest government advice on going to the beach during UK lockdown.
Boris Johnson recently announced that some lockdown measures in England will be eased, and that the public will now be able to go out to exercise more than once a day and sit in the sun.
In an address to the nation on 10 May, the Prime Minister announced that lockdown will be eased in phases over the coming months - as part of plans to reopen shops, schools and hospitality industries.
Unlimited exercise is part of the first phase, which was introduced last week.
But are you allowed to go to the beach during lockdown? Here's the latest rules and advice.
Can I go to the beach during lockdown?
In England, driving to open outdoor spaces is allowed under the new guidance. You are allowed to do so with members of your own household. However, this is not currently allowed in the rest of the UK.
In his address to the nation, Boris Johnson said: "You can sit in the sun in your local park, you can drive to other destinations, you can even play sports but only with members of your own household."
The guidelines state: "People may drive to outdoor open spaces irrespective of distance, so long as they respect social distancing guidance while they are there, because this does not involve contact with people outside your household."
People in England have been warned against travelling to other parts of the UK to visit beaches.
The guidelines add: "When travelling to outdoor spaces, it is important that people respect the rules in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and do not travel to different parts of the UK where it would be inconsistent with guidance or regulations issued by the relevant devolved administration."
However, many beach-side towns have urged the public to avoid travelling there for the time being.
Scarborough Council’s deputy leader Cllr Liz Colling told Yorkshire Live: "With the weather expected to warm up again this week, I ask people to continue to play their part in helping to control the spread of coronavirus by only coming back to visit us when we are ready to welcome you properly.
"That time will come, but we’re not there yet."
Cumbria, who has one of the highest rates of coronavirus in the UK, has also urged people to stay away.
Richard Leafe, Lake District National Park chief executive, told the Daily Mail: "Please don't travel for the moment to the Lake District because of the impact that you will have on the local communities here.
"Cumbria already has a fairly high incidence of Covid, so there is real concern on the ground about large amounts of people coming back."