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"This is not the time to travel to visit the Surrey Hills"

3 minute read
"This is not the time to travel to visit the Surrey Hills"

Published by the Eagle Radio News Team at 1:00pm 13th May 2020.

People are being urged to explore their local area instead of travelling to visit the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

From today (13 May) lockdown rules in England are beginning to ease with people allowed to drive to outdoor open spaces and to exercise outside as much as they like. 

The Surrey Hills board says 'this is not the time to travel to visit the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty' as large crowds of visitors would make social distancing difficult. 

The Surrey Hill board say that many rural communities are concerned about an influx of people descending on beauty spots and Surrey villages which would impact social distancing. 

Many facilities will be shut such as car parks, toilets, and places to purchase food. 

Heather Kerswell, Chair of the Surrey Hills AONB Board is urging people to stay local as lockdown eases: 

“As we move out of the lock-down period over the coming months we look forward to welcoming visitors back to the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

"We know you will be keen to return to the Surrey Hills but just for now please stay local!

"This will ensure we all respect Government safety measures, local communities and wildlife.

"As freedom returns and we embrace a new normal, we will be keen for everyone to come and enjoy the benefits of natural beauty while supporting the local business community who very much need our custom at this time thank you."

Stephanie Fudge, National Trust General Manager for the Surrey Hills says any reopening will be gradual: 

“For several weeks, while our places remain closed, we have been working on plans to gradually reopen them.

"Following the Prime Minister's broadcast outlining the Government's gradual roadmap out of lockdown we are reviewing its effect on our reopening plans.

"The safety of our staff, volunteers, visitors and local residents is our priority.

"Any reopening will need to be gradual and phased and visitors’ experience is likely to be different from usual, including the need to manage volume at our pay for entry places.

"Countryside car park opening will also be phased.

"We will need the support of everyone to enable us to keep places open safely."