The chief constable of West Mercia has issued a statement addressing the easing of lockdown restrictions.

The statement states that police will still be ensuring people are abiding to social distancing measures, but will only take enforcement action when absolutely necessary.

Chief constable Anthony Bangham said: “Now we are able to spend more time outdoors, there is opportunity to see friends and family on a one to one basis. Each of us needs to take responsibility for doing so sensibly, safely and within the parameters set out by the Government. I am confident that the vast majority of our communities will continue to play their part and take sensible steps to keep themselves and others safe.

“We will continue to engage with the public, explaining and encouraging people in relation to the guidance and social distancing, and we will only take enforcement action where it is absolutely necessary - when there are clear breaches of the restrictions, predominantly people gathering in large groups.

“We are fortunate to have some beautiful places within our counties, and many people will be glad they now have the option to make the most of them over the coming weeks. If you travel somewhere and it’s busy, please be sensible and go elsewhere or return at a different time. Keep in mind the purpose of the regulations and the ongoing national effort to protect the NHS and save lives.

Constable Bangham also took the opportunity to thank members of public for adhering to the lockdown measures so far.

He added: “We appreciate the support that the communities across West Mercia have shown during the Covid-19 lockdown, with most people abiding by the guidance and staying at home to minimise the spread of infection, requiring us to take very minimal enforcement action.

“Please be responsible and continue to work with us. We all still find ourselves in very challenging circumstances and we appreciate that the public has responded so positively to the extraordinary restrictions placed upon them. Remember that if you need our help we are here for you. Thank you for your continued support.”