Changes to lockdown rules mean people can now travel to the Yorkshire Dales for exercise. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

Changes to lockdown rules mean people can now travel to the Yorkshire Dales for exercise. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

The boss of the Yorkshire Dales national park has asked visitors to show respect to the countryside and its communities.

David Butterworth, chief executive of the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority warned that many facilities are still closed.

He also emphasised that anyone coming to the area must still adhere to guidelines.

The UK Government lifted restrictions on travelling for exercise in England on Wednesday.

Mr Butterworth said: “Everyone should be observing the government’s social-distancing guidelines.

“Stay at home if you’re unwell or self-isolating. Maintain social distancing of at least two metres from anyone outside your household. And wash your hands regularly.

“Prospective visitors should be aware that the Yorkshire Dales experience they may have been used to will not be the same. Most local businesses remain closed, including cafes, restaurants, pubs, and many local shops.

“Visitors will need to be self-sufficient when they visit the national park.

“National park authority car parks and toilets will be open, but, if car parks are full, we would ask people not to park in villages or on verges in order to keep local communities safe. And remember that you can’t stay overnight.

“Car parking will be free to NHS staff and social carers.”

The chief executive asked visitors to the Dales to:

  • Respect the Land – exercise within your limitations to keep pressure off local resources, and know the countryside code. Take care to respect the plant and wildlife which has thrived during lockdown.
  • Respect the Community – we recognise that many in the local community are among some of the most vulnerable groups of people. Many still need to self-isolate. While walking, please keep a safe distance from homes, schools, and farms.
  • Respect each Other – stay two metres apart; keep within your family or household groups; and avoid gathering in Dales towns and villages where many of the shops and services remain closed. Finally, be kind and respect one another – whether visitor or local.

He said the national park authority ranger service will continue to support North Yorkshire and Cumbria police across the park this weekend to help keep everyone safe.

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