BRITS planning a summer holiday in the UK have been warned that a trip to tourist hotspots such as Cornwall and Devon are off the cards for the indefinite future.
Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove told MPs that “at the moment and for some time to come” members of the public should not travel to visit popular British seaside resorts such as Cornwall.
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Tory MP Steve Double asked, following concerns of “another wave” of coronavirus if the lockdown is eased, which will result in an influx of people in Cornwall, whether there will still be travel restrictions and clear guidelines.
Mr Gove replied: “Cornwall is beautiful, visiting it is a pleasure, but at the moment and for some time to come, don’t.”
Tourist hotspots and attractions are likely to be off the cards for a while, according to Mr Gove, who also confirmed that knowing that coronavirus spreads more easily inside than outside “will be an important factor” when debating the release of certain lockdown measures.
It came as Tory MP Andrew Griffith called for garden centres to be reopened in the first wave of changes to the lockdown restrictions.
Mr Griffith warned that garden centres across the UK are “economically wilting with every day of the peak growing season that they remain closed”.
He added: “When the time is right, but I hope that will be soon, that the outdoor economy and garden centres, including those in West Sussex, are in the first wave of modifications as they’re important to the emerging mental health crisis.”
While Mr Gove admitted it was a “valid point,” he added: “One of the things we know about this disease is that it spreads more easily inside than outside and as the Government reflects on how to lift current restrictions, that will be an important factor.”
MPs also thanked Devon and Cornwall police for enforcing the lockdown on people travelling to the coast for non-essential purposes, including second homes and holidays.
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This weekend, a couple were caught having driven 300 miles from Kent to Cornwall for a holiday.
They had their car seized by police after they were found sleeping in their car before they confessed they had driven to the coast – flouting the strict restrictions protecting the country.
Gordon Ramsay has also sparked fury among Cornish locals after he moved from London to Cornwall during the lockdown.
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Cornwall holidays are at risk, however, due to coronavirus – hotels and attractions in Cornwall could fold due to the lockdown, as experts warn up to 80 per cent of businesses could close for good unless they are able to open for the summer.
Visit Cornwall chief executive Malcolm Bell issued the stark warning as the coastal region has seen tourist numbers plummet due to the pandemic.
He explained to Sky News: “For the worst-case scenario, which we hope won’t happen, if this went through to August we’d be talking about £1.2bn worth of lost earnings. According to our research that could be the end for 80 per cent of the business.”
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