'People are listening' - region is quiet on first weekend of lockdown
- Credit: Chris Bishop
The majority of people across Norfolk and Waveney appear to have heeded calls to stay at home so far during the first weekend of the third national lockdown.
Police reminded people to "stay local" and avoid unnecessary travel as one couple from Northamptonshire were fined for making an 120-mile trip to see the seals at Horsey.
In Great Yarmouth, council leader Carl Smith said that Covid marshals were out patrolling Gorleston beach and promenade, as well as Yarmouth's Marine Parade.
"We won't really be able to assess how people responded to the rules until next week", he said, "but so far people seem to be following advice."
One dog walker in Gorleston said that while the beach looked busy "from a distance", once you were among the flow of human traffic it was clear "everyone was sticking to their bubble".
However, she said the scene was "poles apart" from the first national lockdown, when the coast had been empty.
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Likewise in Great Yarmouth, while one man said the scene showed a "subdued seafront" occupied by a few dog walkers, Labour councillor Mike Smith-Clare said he was disappointed there were still "numerous groups" milling about.
He said: "There were a large number of cars parking on the North Denes esplanade to meet up with other vehicles. The fact that some people remain seemingly ignorant of the pandemic beggars belief."
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Up in north and west Norfolk, beaches remained quiet throughout most of the day and car parks empty.
Mundesley resident Janet Munro said: "There were a few people sitting by the museum and people wandering up and down the slopes with their dogs - but nothing really out of the ordinary thank goodness."
Fakenham resident Mark Frary, who keeps a boat at Wells-next-the-Sea, painted a similar picture.
He said: "I've been to check our boat today at the outer harbour and, to be fair, it’s quiet. People have stayed away."
At Hunstanton and Cromer things were quieter again, with only a handful of people strolling along the path by the respective beaches at midday.
One visitor said it had been "dead" compared to previous weeks.
In Norwich city centre there was minimal activity. People were buying fresh fruit and fish at Norwich Market and two police officers patrolled Gentleman's Walk.
Further afield car parks at out-of-city centre supermarkets, including Asda in Hellesdon, were reasonably busy, with people heading out to buy essential items.