Lancashire County Council News Release
15 May 2020
Safety message for Lancashire country parks
People are being urged to stay safe and stick to social distancing rules in the Lancashire countryside this weekend.
The county council’s countryside parks can get very busy and it may be difficult for people to socially distance at Beacon Fell, Wycoller and the Forrest of Bowland.
Car parks at these country parks are open, but facilities such as visitor centres, cafes and toilets remain closed. Waste bins are not currently being emptied and people are being asked to take any litter back home with them.
People living near the parks use them regularly, but anyone thinking of driving somewhere new may want to consider other more local options so that the countryside parks do not become overcrowded.
County Councilor Albert Atkinson, cabinet member for technical services, rural affairs and waste management, said: “People can come and use our country parks, but we want them to be mindful that places like car parks and picnic areas can easily be overcrowded.
“There are miles of open countryside with good public footpaths and easy access across Lancashire. We’d urge people to consider visiting these areas nearby where they live too.
“Staff who usually work in our parks have currently been redeployed to work on other Covid-19 related duties.
“If you do visit our parks, it’s worth bearing in mind that many facilities will be closed because of this.”
Tim Blythe, the county council’s countryside service manager added: “It’s great that people now have more flexibility in the way they can exercise outdoors.
“However, when choosing where to go, we want people to consider whether traveling is necessary and whether it will be easy to keep to the social distancing rules when they get there.
“When large numbers of people travel to one area, it becomes very difficult to socially distance, putting you and your family at risk.
“This will be the case if too many people visit our country parks. If people do visit, we’d ask them to follow the countryside code, take their litter home and be aware of the wildlife in the parks, which has been thriving during lockdown.
“We’d also urge them to keep to the social distancing guidelines so we can all continue to do our best to protect our key workers and reduce the pressures on the NHS.”
For further information please contact: Rob Bywater on 01772 534334