Visitors are being warned by authorities at Richmond Park to respect physical distancing measures after people in living in the area voiced their concerns over the spread of coronavirus at the park.
MP Sarah Olney wrote to park authorities after a number of her constituents noticed groups meeting at park entrances this weekend and queueing at the food and drink stalls inside were not observing physical distancing rules and could lead to the spread of the Covid-19 virus.
Residents were “deeply worried” by the risk of the virus spreading in the parks if the lockdown rules currently in force across the UK were not adhered to inside.
“Aside from people generally congregating on paths and around gates, one of their biggest concerns is the situation with the park’s food and drink facilities, with visitors – many of whom not wearing masks – gathering in tight spaces whilst queuing to be served.
“I have written to Richmond Park to ask what measures they can put in place to create a safer system and one in which people are better able to socially distance,” Olney added.
New coronavirus infections are high in Richmond, however it is decreasing and needs to stay that way.
According to Public Health England (PHE), there were 1,074 new infections in the week up to January 8.
That was down 237 or 18.1 per cent less than the previous week, suggesting the third national lockdown measures were having an impact on lowering transmission.
Olney has said for her intervention on the issue was “not about closing the park” but rather “recognising the immense danger posed by the new strain and acknowledging the surging rate of infections, hospitalisations and deaths…It’s about making sure that measures are put in place to ensure proper social distancing can take place.”