Wealden District Council
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Be Coast and Country Aware

Publish Date: 28 May 2020

Sussex Resilience Forum (SRF) is reminding members of the public to stay safe when visiting the county’s coastal sites and open areas.

Following government changes to Covid-19 restrictions, members of the public are able to exercise freely and travel any distance to reach outdoor areas for the purpose of exercise or recreation, whilst complying with social distancing regulations.

An increase in visitors to coastal areas and national parks in Sussex is expected as the warm weather continues, and SRF partners are urging all to stay safe, safeguarding themselves and the county’s emergency services.

Marc Clothier, Superintendent, Sussex Police and SRF Tactical Chair said: “It’s really important that while people are enjoying the warmer weather and spending time outside, that they take simple steps to stay safe.

“Many beaches do not have lifeguard services in place and not all public facilities have reopened due to Coronavirus restrictions, so we need people to make responsible decisions about their journeys and destinations, so that social distancing can be maintained.

“Taking these measures will mean we can all play our part in keeping safe and protecting our emergency services whilst enjoying the county.”

Claire Hughes, director of HM Coastguard said: “Now, more than ever, people need to respect the sea and the coast. Whether you’re local or not, whatever your ability or experience in your chosen sport or leisure activity, the sea can still catch you out and be unmerciful when it does.

“The majority of beaches will not be lifeguarded. If you get into trouble call 999 and ask for the Coastguard and we will come to your aid. But coronavirus hasn’t gone away and we all need to follow the rules. Remember your choices might put people, including yourself and frontline responders, at risk. Take extra care in these extraordinary times.”

SRF and its partner agencies will be issuing safety messages across their websites and social media platforms over the coming weeks.

Communities are also reminded to continue to take note of national updates around restrictions which are subject to constant review.

Current Government advice is that you must continue to stay 2m away from anyone not in your immediate household and that public transport should be avoided for all but essential journeys.

You can find more information on staying safe while out and about in Wealden on our Covid-19 news pages.