Devon & Cornwall Police is asking the public to play their part and act responsibly as the region prepares to enter the next stage of the Government Roadmap to move England out of COVID-19 restrictions.
In a new message to the public, Police Alert Officer, Devon and Cornwall, Linzi Berryman says: “As new regulations come into effect on Monday, outdoor gatherings, including in private gardens, can take place between two households or groups of up to six people from different households.
“There should still be no mixing indoors with people outside of your household or support bubble.”
Temporary Assistant Chief Constable Steve Parker added: “The move to reduce COVID-19 restrictions will be welcomed by some communities, but it may cause anxiety to others. While some areas of COVID-related enforcement the police have undertaken will cease, the message to stay local and respect Government guidelines to reduce risk does not change.
“COVID-19 has never been about policing a pandemic. While we are stepping back from some enforcement, I am asking the public to step-up as COVID-19 has not gone away.
“Government advice is for people to stay local and avoid unnecessary travel and I echo that request, but I am also aware that many will wish to meet with loved ones outside.
“Devon & Cornwall Police will maintain the approach of the 4Es to the new legislation using engagement, education and encouragement as well as enforcement to ask members of the public to comply with the regulations. My hope is the public will continue to act responsibly and comply.”
From Monday, outdoor sports facilities such as tennis and basketball courts and golf courses, and open-air swimming pools will be allowed to reopen. People can take part in formally organised outdoor sports. Outdoor parent and child groups can resume.
TACC Parker added: “For those making plans to meet, please make sure you adhere to the rule of six, and stay local but also think about the legacy you may leave; respect our wonderful beauty spots and take your rubbish with you.
“I would also ask you to be aware of the dangers that our coastline can pose in terms of swimming and surfing in the sea.
“We all want the pandemic to be over, and the only way for us to do this is to contain the virus, wear a face covering, stay local, and to keep practising social distancing.
“Everyone has a social responsibility play their part to prevent the virus spreading and to see us make it to Step Two of the Roadmap on April 12.
“Play your part and behave in a way that respects our communities and that will keep yourself and others safe.”
For further advice, please see the COVID-19 FAQs page on the Devon and Cornwall Police website.