Team vehicles at Sycamore Gap on Hadrian's Wall. Photo: NNPMRT

Team vehicles at Sycamore Gap on Hadrian's Wall. Photo: NNPMRT

Rescuers in north-eastern England are pleading with outdoor enthusiasts not to travel to the Northumberland national park over the Easter weekend.

They said they don’t want a repeat of an event last weekend when a group of fellrunners headed on to the hills.

Iain Nixon, team leader of Northumberland National Park Mountain Rescue Team, said: “In Northumberland we have been very pleased that the majority of outdoor enthusiasts are abiding by the government’s social distancing, essential travel and exercising from home requirements.

“To you we say thank you.

“However, as with other parts of the country, we are disappointed that some are ignoring the advice and venturing out into the Northumberland national park having travelled some distance to get there.

“Last weekend a group of fellrunners headed on to the hills and no doubt assumed, if they got into difficulty, that our volunteers would risk their own lives – and those of their families and colleagues – to come to their aid if called.”

The team reiterated the pleas made by Mountain Rescue England and Wales, the umbrella body for teams south of the border, whose senior executive officer Mike France said: “The hills and upland areas will still be there to be enjoyed once the restrictions are lifted.

“We’ve seen a huge drop in the number of callouts in the past couple of weeks and we’re very grateful for that. But it is vitally important that people continue to be responsible and that everyone stays at home over the Easter weekend. That is what will save lives and protect not only the NHS but also our mountain rescue volunteers.”

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