Visitors to Yorkshire Dales urged to stay away from shops

Visitors to the Yorkshire Dales are being urged to stay away from local shops and businesses following last night’s announcement from the Prime Minister.

Boris Johnson told the nation that the public was now allowed unlimited exercise out of their homes and could travel to exercise.

Until now visitors had been discouraged from travelling to the countryside, including the Yorkshire Dales National Park, by car.

While the full details of the Government’s updated guidance have not yet been revealed in a 50-page document due to be released later today, it is likely yesterday’s statement could lead to large numbers of people travelling into the national park to walk and cycle.

Figures released last week show that at least 16 people have died from Covid-19 in Richmondshire.

And Upper Dales county councillor Yvonne Peacock said there was still concern that the virus would claim more lives after being spread by visitors.

She urged both locals and visitors to maintain social distancing when leaving their homes.

She added: “There are still fears that people will come into the Dales and bring the virus with them.

“Therefore what we hope to see happen is that those coming in stick to the rules and also don’t go into the shops that locals use.

“Everyone – locals and visitors – needs to keep two metres apart.”

Hawes and High Abbotside district councillor Jill McMullon said there was a lot of unease at the updated advice in the communities she represents.

“We’ve spent six weeks telling people to stay away and now people have been given pretty much an open invitation to come to the Dales.

“The prime Minister also didn’t say anything about second homes – are they too going to be allowed to come?”


  1. I agree as a resident there will be a lot of local people living in national parks extremely worried about a potential influx of visitors and second home owners. I for one have second home owners on either side of me!! Also as a lot of visitors that come here seem to come from the North East and West Yorkshire both with a high rate of infection it seems hard to see how the spread of the virus won’t increase especially if visiting our shops.

  2. Of course second home owners are allowed to come, just not allowed to stay overnight. I would point out to the Councillor that second home owners equally pay rates and taxes to the county as permanent residents, I don’t hear of a refund being offered when they are being refused the right to use the services they are paying for, all other ‘holiday’ makers are getting a refund, the Councillor might like to consider this when she talks about second home owners in such derisory terms.

  3. I live in Grassington.The lock down hasn’t stopped the tourists.Walkers, gangs of young men walking by River,families playing in the river, CYCLISTS by the thousands and bikers roaring round.All using our only local Spar shop and garage.Throwing rubbish around and urinating against walls spitting and sitting outside in the square using all our local benches.Holiday cottages full and second homes full.Couples and families coming from near by towns where the virus is rife.
    We had no cases God knows what will happen now.Our residents are mainly elderly All locked away while strangers are waltzing around leaving their filth.Great work Boris.Hasnt the virus killed off enough folk yet.

    • I understand your fright and frustration but too blame Boris is a cop out
      The mindless few causing grief for so many

  4. If at least sixteen people have sadly died from Covid 19 in Richmondshire, surely we should also be carefully socially isolating from visitors so we don’t risk giving it to visitors to take home with them?

  5. I have to agree with Andrew. II’m not a second home owner.
    But hopefully, all people will use their common sense and courtesy. We must rise above our primeval hostility to maintain our sense of community. If we are not careful, tourism will suffer long after this crisis. Pleasant people will not wish to return to suffer abuse. If visitors are behaving badly then involve the police.

  6. I think there are various things to consider here. Let us remember those who own second homes have as much right as others. They pay for their homes. They are locals in two places rather than one where they pay council tax, and all other bills. They have as much right to use ALL the services, shops etc.
    The real problem is the governments mess up. They are allowing travel now. As soon as we travel and mix the virus spreads. It does not matter whether the mixing is via locals or tourists. In schools, parks or shops. Where there are a lot of people there is going to be spread. Opening up the country is the issue. The Dales is a place where people want to spend time and that is what has saved the economy over the last several decades. The government should not be opening the country up when there are still around 30,000 new cases per week. The anger should be directed at the government, not the innocent individuals who are second home owners or the tourists whom the government have given permission to travel. Hopefully those with some sense will continue social distancing and if coming from highly infected areas, perhaps reconsider how to do this safely.

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