POLICE had to be called to Helmsley at the weekend after biker descended on a town and a number of them flouted social distancing rules.

Ryedale District Council said about 30 bikers congregated in central car park on Sunday with some not following Government guidance on social distancing, causing concern to local residents.

North Yorkshire Police were called to the town to move the bikers on, and community officers from Ryedale District Council also attended to cordon off the central area of the car park to prevent further gatherings.

It comes after some aspects of lockdown were lifted by the government last week, allowing people to spend more time outdoors and to travel to exercise in the open air - providing social distancing rules are observed.

Since that time, Ryedale District Council has been urging people to act responsibly if coming to Ryedale for exercise, plan their visit to allow for the fact that many amenities may not be open, and to follow the two metre social distancing rule at all times.

Cllr Keane Duncan, leader of the council, said: “We aren’t trying to stop people enjoying being out of doors, and we totally understand that people want to come to our beautiful locations here in Ryedale.

“However it is absolutely vital that everyone respects the rules on social distancing, for the sake of our residents and our communities as a whole.

“Throughout the weekend we have had community officers out and about across Ryedale just keeping a watchful eye, so we were ready to respond if any problem occurred. We have also been working closely with our colleagues at North Yorkshire Police to take joint action where needed.

“Fortunately this particular situation was handled quickly, and our council officers remained on site during Sunday just to make sure that there were no further issues.

“Ryedale is a friendly place, and we want to welcome responsible visitors back to our market towns and beauty spots in a safe way. Social distancing is essential, and, working closely with the police, we will do everything we can to make sure it is observed.”