A new strict lockdown could be on the cards, the government warns.
On the hottest day of the year yesterday, 500,000 people crowded onto the nation’s beaches.
And now Boris Johnson’s spokesman has warned that a rise in coronavirus cases could mean tougher lockdown measures.
Authorities threatened to close down beaches yesterday as so many people turned up.
A major incident was declared in Bournemouth after crowds there got out of control.
While some observed social distancing rules, others partied in groups and there were reports of drunken fighting.
The overcrowded beaches caused chaos along England’s coastline.
That was despite authorities’ pleas to stay away as the UK’s official coronavirus death toll tops 43,000.
Downing Street reminded the public that if breaching of social distancing goes on, the lockdown could be ramped up again.
Boris Johnson’s spokesperson said: “It’s not for me to pass comment on particular photographs.
“What I would say is that the PM and the government’s scientific and medical advisers have stressed the great importance of the public continuing to adhere to social distancing advice.
“It’s only because of the public’s hard work that we’ve been able to bring the virus under control.
“If the rules don’t continue to be followed and the virus starts to spread exponentially again, then we will look at having to reverse some of the easements that we’ve put into place.
“And I don’t think anyone in the British public would want for that to happen.”
Certain areas could be shut down if crowds still flock there.
In an interview with TalkRadio, Health Secretary Hancock said: “We do have that power [to close beaches]. I am reluctant to use it because people have had a pretty tough lockdown and I want everybody to enjoy the sunshine.
“But the key is to do it with respect for the rules – stay with your household, stay a good distance from other households.”
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