Ipswich visitors fined after 60-mile trip to Sea Palling in Norfolk
- Credit: Denise Bradley
Visitors from Ipswich have been given fixed penalty notices for breaching Covid rules - after making a 60-mile journey to a Norfolk beauty spot along with hundreds of other visitors during Saturday's fine weather.
Norfolk police were called to Sea Palling - mid-way between Great Yarmouth and Cromer on the Norfolk coast - on Saturday after receiving reports of hundreds of visitors.
They found 30 vehicles parked in the beach area and issued eight fixed penalty tickets after finding people had travelled from Ipswich and others had arrived from Peterborough.
According to the AA it takes 96 minutes to make the 64-mile journey from Ipswich town centre to Sea Palling.
Norfolk Police are carrying out regular patrols in coastal areas while "stay local" restrictions remain in place to try to reduce the spread of Covid-19 during the lockdown.
These restrictions are due to remain in place until April 12 at the earliest.
Norfolk Police said that although it is continuing to engage, encourage and explain to people first, those who continue to breach the rules could see themselves being fined.
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Sergeant Dave Cooper said: "We understand people want to enjoy the sunshine, and our beaches are a big attraction in Norfolk, but we need to stay as local as possible and not become complacent as the vaccine programme is rolled out across the county.
"We will be carrying out Covid-19 patrols over the weekend and into the coming weeks to ensure we are helping to look after everyone and remain vigilant.”
Sea Palling is a popular spot for visitors during the summer with a sandy beach and regular patrols by lifeguards - but it is out of bounds for anyone who does not live in the immediate area during the current Covid restrictions.
Police forces across the region have been vigilant over recent weeks, but the arrival of spring and its better weather could prompt more people to travel further and officers will be taking more steps to try to ensure people stay local until restrictions are eased.