People visiting Richmond’s parks, commons and other outdoor spaces are being urgently reminded of the vital need to follow the latest medical advice on social distancing.

The Government’s scientific and medical advisors have stressed the crucial importance of keeping a two-metre gap between people in order to prevent any further spread of Coronavirus.

However The Council have suggested that many people are ignoring this advice and putting themselves and their family and friends at greater risk of contracting the disease.

Chair of the Environment, Sustainability, Culture and Sport Committee, Cllr Martin Elengorn, said: “We want to keep our parks open, but we can only do that if people behave responsibly and pay careful heed to the Public Health England advice on social distancing.

“We remain concerned that some people are still gathering in groups and this could have serious health consequences.

“If people are using the playgrounds and outdoor gym equipment, they are being advised to take precautions and wipe down before and after use with surface wipes or a towel, as well as making sure they wash their hands as quickly as possible.”

Parks are safe places and play an important role in keeping people physically and mentally well - therefore the Council have no current plans to close the borough’s parks and commons.

They will remain open for residents to take exercise and walk through.

The Council have also advised that people should not congregate and must observe the Government guidance on social distancing.

Anyone with symptoms of Covid19 should not enter parks and any resident who should be self-isolating should also not visit parks.