POLICE have said that it is stepping in patrols in Harrogate town today - after the force said it has seen an increase in the number of visitors. 

The move follows an increase in the number of people who are visiting the town despite the government’s measures instructing people to ‘stay at home’.

This includes motorists travelling into the town for ‘non-essential reasons’, reports of people having picnics, residents drinking in the streets, groups congregating in the town centre and people meeting up to go for walks.

Harrogate’s Neighbourhood Policing Inspector Penny Taylor of North Yorkshire Police said:“It is really disappointing that we are having to step up our patrols in Harrogate today.

“Whilst we know the majority of people in the town are doing the right thing and staying at home, despite the beautiful weather, it is unacceptable that some people are showing such a blatant disregard for the Government’s guidance.

“To those who think the rules don’t apply to them, please remember our NHS colleagues and the very difficult job they are doing right now and please remember the people who’ve lost their loved ones and the reasons why these restrictions are now part of our way of life. We are all in this together, we need your help, and each one of us can do a little bit that will make not just a huge difference, but the difference between life and death.

“Our officers will be out across the town today with a highly visible policing presence, to disperse groups, enforce the social distancing measures and remind people of the seriousness of the situation we are facing. Seeing your mates can wait. Please play your part, stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives.

The full “Stay at home” measures can be found here: bit.ly/3anXIDJ