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Call for vigilance ahead of changes to lockdown restrictions

The people of Cheshire are being urged to remain vigilant and act responsibly as coronavirus restrictions are eased this weekend.

From Saturday, and for the first time in more than 100 days, pubs and restaurants across Cheshire will be reopening their doors to customers.

In preparation for the changes, all those living in the county are being urged to play their part and to remember that the coronavirus pandemic has not gone away.

Superintendent Julie Westgate from Cheshire Police said: “I understand that it's been a difficult time for everyone, particularly young people, who are keen to go out and socialise with friends.

“I don’t want to spoil the fun and I want everyone to have a good time but please do so safely – it’s essential that everyone continues to remain vigilant and acts responsibly.

“If you are visiting bars and pubs this weekend, drink sensibly, and pre-plan your travel and how you are going to get home.

“The threat of coronavirus has not gone away and while pubs and restaurants are reopening, it is really important to remember that things will not simply go back to normal.

“Social distancing guidelines remain in place, meaning that capacity in all premises will be limited and people will need to plan ahead.”

A dedicated policing operation will be in place across the county and there will be an increased police presence in key areas throughout the weekend.

Supt Westgate added: “Officers will be patrolling key locations and we will be dealing with any incidents of crime and disorder, while our local authority partners will deal with any licensing issues.

“We will continue to use common sense and discretion to determine what is reasonable, with officers engaging, explaining, encouraging and, only as a last resort, enforcing.

“I would like to take this opportunity to remind people we cannot enforce social distancing and are relying on your good nature to follow the guidance.

“Keep in mind the purpose of the remaining regulations and the national effort and by following the guidance and working together we can all help to protect the NHS and save lives.”

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