No green light for tourists in Swanage

With car parks closed and one of the main town centre roads closed for highway improvements, people planning to visit Swanage are being asked to think twice before driving to the coastal resort this weekend.

While travel restrictions may have been eased, the town is not gearing up for tourists. All restaurants, cafes and accommodation options remain closed by law. There are some limited takeaway options available mainly by pre-booking in advance.

Car parks remain closed

All the National Trust car parks in Studland and Corfe Castle remain closed, as does the car park at Durlston Country Park.

Swanage Information Centre said:

“Swanage car parks will be restricted over the weekend with Main Beach and Broad Road car parks being closed to the public. Town centre car parks will remain open for essential shopping. Please think twice before coming to Swanage.”

Traffic restrictions will be enforced, so anyone parked for a longer time than allowed in short term on-street parking may receive a fixed penalty notice.

Town centre road closure

Institute Road closure sign

Swanage town centre roadworks continues to cause traffic disruption

Institute Road in the centre of Swanage remains closed, after the work to widen the pavements was restarted two weeks ago. The traffic flow direction of Kings Road East has been reversed and temporary traffic lights have been installed at the junction with the High Street. This is expected to last until mid-June.

“Inadvertently spread the virus to local people”

Chief Constable James Vaughan, of Dorset Police, said:

“In Dorset, we are joining forces with our partner agencies and asking the public to use common sense and to ‘think twice’ before rushing to the county. We do not want the relaxation of the restrictions to act as a green light for tourists to flock to our beauty spots and inadvertently spread the virus to local people.

“We will use common sense and discretion to determine what’s reasonable. Our officers will continue to engage with the public, explain the regulations and guidance and encourage people to follow what is being asked of them. Enforcement is a very last resort.”

Between Friday 27th March and Thursday 14th May 2020, Dorset Police says it issued 808 fixed penalty notices to people who have allegedly breached the COVID-19 (coronavirus) restrictions.

What you can do this weekend

Dorset Police says that the amendments made by the government mean people in England can:

  • Collect goods from a business permitted to remain open and visit recycling centres, garden centres and outdoor sport courts
  • Take part in activity associated with the sale or letting of residential property – including visiting estate agents and attending house viewings
  • Visit public open spaces alone or with members of your household for recreation
  • Visit public open spaces or take exercise with one member of another household, as long as they stay two metres apart

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