Dorset authorities ask visitors to 'respect our communities'

Dorset authorities ask visitors to 'respect our communities'

Published by George Sharpe at 12:01am 6th June 2020. (Updated at 12:11pm 6th June 2020)

Health groups, local authorities and emergency services are asking visitors to 'respect our communities' this weekend.

It's after huge numbers flocked to Durdle Door last weekend, where a group of people were hospitalised after jumping from the arch into the sea.

The authorities, including Dorset Council and Public Health Dorset, are calling on the public to act responsibly.

The Lulworth Estate is introducing new measures to limit the number of people who visit Durdle Door and Lulworth Cove over the weekend. From next week, visitors will have to book before they arrive.

Dorset Council Leader Cllr Spencer Flower said:

"Last weekend saw issues in popular destinations with littering, people urinating and defecating in public, people camping overnight and people having dangerous campfires and BBQs - despite extensive warnings against this from all local agencies. 
"We were very disappointed to see huge numbers of visitors ignoring manned roadblocks. Council employees were abused by the members of the public as they tried to manage the traffic. This is not acceptable.
"We are meeting with stakeholders this week, including MPs, landowners and police to agree a plan which we hope will help manage the huge visitor numbers to the Lulworth area."

They've now written a letter to the government asking them to reconsider rules that allow long-distance travel for day trips while lockdown measures are in place.

Sam Crowe, Director of Public Health Dorset said:

"We're certainly trying to get that message out there to national government, just because in an area like Dorset and BCP Council, it is having a dispropportianate impact and obviously that can have a knock on effect on people worrying locally.

"As lockdown restrictions begin to ease gradually, it's important to recognise we all need to take responsibility for controlling the spread of coronavirus.

"Alongside continuing effective social distancing, the NHS Test and Trace service will be key for us to contain local cases and prevent a second peak in infections."