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Concern about large crowds of people at Highcliffe Clifftop car park28 January 2021

We have been very concerned about the large numbers of people arriving on our clifftop car park. On Friday there was a party of 20-30 surfers showing no signs of social distancing. When a member of our committee approached them they wouldn't admit to where they had come from and we noted them actively phoning their friends to encourage more to come along. It was more like a party than the reaction to a pandemic! The rules are quite explicit that we should stay within our own town or village. We phoned Dorset police and also our local councillor Nigel Brooks, who also asked the neighbourhood police to help. It seems that the police have been monitoring Mudeford Quay and Avon Beach, but not coming up to Highcliffe due to staff shortages.

The HRA are very aware of our elderly population who need to be able to walk safely, many of whom live in the flats near to the car park and the beach. There are also younger residents who are shielding and need to be able to walk safely for their daily exercise. Many of them have become too afraid to go out on good weather days and so we have asked the police to enforce the law.