Three Londoners have been fined for driving more than 250 miles to camp at a Welsh beauty spot a week after police issued clarifying guidelines.
Police said the group were caught at the picturesque beach in Mwnt, West Wales, where they were handed fines and sent packing.
A spokeswoman for Dyfed Powys Police said: ‘Three men from the London area were located having set up camp at Mwnt. They had travelled a considerable distance only to be fined and sent straight back home.’
The guidance instructs officers that people can drive to the countryside for walks, when far more time is spent walking than driving.
It even allows for people to stop and rest to eat lunch while on a long walk. The guidance also made clear it is ‘lawful’ to drive somewhere to exercise.
Welsh beauty spot, Mwnt in Wales where three men from London tried to camp
Welsh beauty spot, Mwnt in south Ceredigion is 250 miles from London
But the advice has been slammed by the National Rural Crime Network (NRCN), which warned it presents a ‘real risk’ of more people travelling to rural towns and villages and a possible spike in cases in Britain’s countryside.
Julia Mulligan, the police and crime commissioner for North Yorkshire and NRCN chairwoman, said the guidelines, produced by the National Police Chiefs Council and College of Policing, ‘go completely against’ Government advice to stay home.
She claimed the new guidelines ‘go completely against’ Government and scientific advice to stay at home to tackle the coronavirus.
‘These new guidelines… are hugely unhelpful in the efforts we are making in rural Britain to stop people travelling to our communities,’ she added.
Mwnt is an ancient site and is also known for an old church near its cliff edge which can be seen in this photo
The Irish Sea off Mwnt is rich in wildlife, being a regular summer home to dolphins, seals and porpoises.
Mwnt is known for having high cliffs and one small alcove with a sandy beach
The Daily Mail placed Mwnt top of its list of ‘Europe’s top ten loveliest hidden beaches’