Merseyside Police horses Silver and Oxberry patrol Formby Beach

Motorists travelled from as far away as Birmingham, Manchester and Wigan to visit beaches in Southport, Ainsdale and Formby at the weekend. 

An estimated 7,000 people, on average, were on the sands at any one time over Saturday and Sunday. 

Some of them were responsible for leaving behind tonnes of rubbish which was described as “an insult to our local communities.”

Sefton Council leader Cllr Ian Maher said: “Sefton’s coastline is stunning, and we understand why people want to visit, especially when the weather is nice. However, it’s really worrying that people are ignoring Government advice and appear to be completely ignoring social distancing guidance.

Read More: Beach goers urged to stop being selfish as tonnes of rubbish cleared by council

“As well as risking their own safety, and the safety of our local residents, the state in which some of those visitors have left certain parts of our coastline is simply an insult to our local communities.

“In addition, there were a number of people who as well as ignoring the requests from Council and the Police to stay away, put the Southport Lifeboat team at additional risk by getting themselves in the situation where they needed to be rescued from the incoming tide.

“Visitors need to remain respectful and protect our public spaces. Don’t leave your litter behind or use campfires or barbecues.

“We also understand that many people living in our coastal areas have experienced an increase in parked cars.

“Sefton Council is doing everything it can to address the issue and our enforcement officers were issuing parking tickets all weekend to cars parked irresponsibly and dangerously. Unfortunately, the high volume of vehicles and people on all the restricted roads around the seafront meant our officers could not cover all areas safely.

“Some people have suggested we close the beaches but with 22 miles of coastline, with hundreds of individual access points, this is simply not possible.

“We have restricted access to the car parks and worked with Merseyside Police to restrict access to local roads, but the real answer is people taking responsibility for their behaviour and showing some consideration for others.”

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