Original article from Kent Live
Thanet District Council has put in place new rules three months ahead of schedule to combat the potential ‘influx of visitors’ this weekend.
The Easter weekend has arrived just days after coronavirus restrictions were eased across the country.
The latest rules mean people should still ‘minimise travel’ but the ‘stay at home’ message has been dropped.
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Pictures taken in the coastal towns showed the beach busy with those looking to make the most of the sunshine ahead of the long weekend.
While temperatures are forecast to return to a more normal level over the weekend, many families will be tempted by a trip to the seaside having been locked up at home since the turn of the year.
Thanet is always popular during Bank Holidays and the summer and the potential for large numbers of visitors this weekend has seen them take action.
The plan, which was meant to be ready to be activated ahead of ‘high season’ will come into effect from this weekend.
The district currently has the highest infection rate in Kent after a steady week-on-week increase.
The Easter weekend will see four additional Covid-wardens patrolling beaches and promenades across the district.
Newly recruited dedicated enforcement officers to educate people on the Council’s new Beaches and Coast Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) and Coastal Code of Conduct who will be working alongside Kent Police Officers.
Elsewhere, there will be an Increased presence of Civil Enforcement Officers patrolling on foot in the Kingsgate/Broadstairs area and prepared static signage to direct visitors to some of the beaches which have more space and available parking when needed.
A number of other steps have been taken to try and make the visit to Thanet as enjoyable as popular.
All the toilets around the district from Monday 29 March, which will be cleaned throughout the day with portaloos installed at Margate Main Sands and Botany Bay.
Elsewhere, 80 new 1,100 litre colourful bins which are normally reserved for the summer months have been installed.
Speaking about the rollout of the action plan, Gavin Waite, Thanet District Council’s Corporate Director for Communities, said: “Our Beach Management Plan is an integral part of keeping all the services we provide for residents and visitors along our coastline running smoothly.
“We have been working extremely hard behind the scenes to prepare for this latest stage of restrictions easing.
"Despite these plans normally being implemented in time for the summer season, we have them ready for this Easter weekend.
“Many people will choose to visit our 19 miles of coastline over the coming weekend and in the months ahead.
"We want to encourage everyone to do the right thing: respect social distancing, wear a mask when asked, and take their litter home when the bins are full.”
You can view the full statement by pressing here.