Ten tourists who drove more than 200 miles from London to Snowdonia are sent home by police 

TEN tourists who drove almost 250 miles from London to Snowdonia to go mountain climbing together during lockdown are turned around and sent home by police

  • A group of ten were stopped in Bethesda, off the A5 in north Wales yesterday
  • They had driven five hours in two vehicles to go hiking on Mount Snowdon
  • North Wales Police reported the group for breaching stringent lockdown rules 
  • They were forced to turn around and drive 245 miles back to London 

By Emer Scully For Mailonline

Published: 21:02 EDT, 26 April 2020 | Updated: 21:51 EDT, 26 April 2020

Ten hikers from London who drove 245 miles to Snowdonia were forced to turn around and head home after being stopped by police.

The group had driven five hours in two vehicles when they were stopped near their destination on the A5 in Bethesda, North Wales.

They told officers they wanted to go walking in the mountainous National Park.

Instead, the North Wales Police officers escorted their cars to the A-road back to the south so they could begin the ten-hour round trip home.

The force tweeted: ‘A group of 10 stopped in 2 vehicles on A5 #Bethesda earlier, having travelled from London with the intent of going for a walk in Snowdonia. 

North Wales Police officers escorted the drivers of two cars carrying a group of ten hikers back to the A-road so they could begin the ten-hour round trip home to London. Pictured, a sign on the A5 motorway warns 'Wales is closed'

North Wales Police officers escorted the drivers of two cars carrying a group of ten hikers back to the A-road so they could begin the ten-hour round trip home to London. Pictured, a sign on the A5 motorway warns 'Wales is closed'

North Wales Police officers escorted the drivers of two cars carrying a group of ten hikers back to the A-road so they could begin the ten-hour round trip home to London. Pictured, a sign on the A5 motorway warns ‘Wales is closed’

‘Told to return home immediately and escorted back to the A55. Reported for breaching #COVID19 legislation.’ 

In a second incident dealt with by police, staff from a hotel challenged a man ‘who though the regulations did not apply to him’ when they saw him returning to his car after a hike.

He had driven 180 miles from Cumbria to walk up Mount Snowdon at 6am. North Wales police said: ‘He was abusive to the informant when challenged and clearly thought the regulations did not apply to him.

The group (not pictured) had driven five hours in two vehicles when they were stopped near their destination on the A5 in Bethesda. Pictured, a road block on Rhos on Sea's promenade in North Wales

The group (not pictured) had driven five hours in two vehicles when they were stopped near their destination on the A5 in Bethesda. Pictured, a road block on Rhos on Sea's promenade in North Wales

The group (not pictured) had driven five hours in two vehicles when they were stopped near their destination on the A5 in Bethesda. Pictured, a road block on Rhos on Sea’s promenade in North Wales

They told officers they wanted to go walking in the mountainous National Park. An empty car park is pictured at Pen-y-Pass

They told officers they wanted to go walking in the mountainous National Park. An empty car park is pictured at Pen-y-Pass

They told officers they wanted to go walking in the mountainous National Park. An empty car park is pictured at Pen-y-Pass 

In the Brecon Beacons, police stopped people who had driven from Birmingham and Hereford. Pictured, a message warning tourists away is seen at Snowdonia

In the Brecon Beacons, police stopped people who had driven from Birmingham and Hereford. Pictured, a message warning tourists away is seen at Snowdonia

In the Brecon Beacons, police stopped people who had driven from Birmingham and Hereford. Pictured, a message warning tourists away is seen at Snowdonia

‘Police were called and he was stopped on the eastbound carriageway of the A55 by one of our armed response team who reported him for breaching the legislation.

‘We despair – we really do.’   

The incidents came amid a widespread increase in foot and motor traffic on another sunny day across much of the country. 

Data from Apple Maps yesterday showed that driving is up 4 per cent and walking has increased 5 per cent among Britons compared to last week. 

Officers in Merthyr Tydfil found a couple who had travelled nearly 150 miles from Leicester to pick up a rug.

In the Brecon Beacons, police stopped people who had driven from Birmingham and Hereford, and two hikers from Bristol who were attempting to walk Pen Y Fan were issued with fixed penalty notices by police.

In Pembrokeshire, a driver on a 60-mile round trip to buy tomato plants was reported for non-essential travel.

While another driver was stopped at Begelly and issued with a ticket as they were ‘looking to get a coffee’. Police said it was not the first time this motorist had been reported. 

Two people who had travelled from Birmingham for a ‘day out’ to Broadway Tower in the Cotswolds were issued with fixed penalty notices.

While in nearby Bibury, officers issued nine tickets to people visiting from Leicester and London. 

It comes a week after an angry local confronted a couple who drove 180 miles to rent an Airbnb.

The man in Snowdownia, Wales, slammed the pair and accused them of breaking coronavirus lockdown rules – but the venue’s landlady claimed the couple were made homeless by the pandemic. 

The Government has ordered people to stay in their primary residence as the crisis continues. 

The owner of the property said the man pictured above was made homeless by the coronavirus and had nowhere else to go

The owner of the property said the man pictured above was made homeless by the coronavirus and had nowhere else to go

A local ranted at this man in Wales

A local ranted at this man in Wales

It comes a week after an angry local confronted a couple who drove 180 miles to rent an Airbnb 

Across Britain, shoppers took advantage of hot an dry conditions yesterday – although wet weather is on the way. 

Hundreds of people also enjoyed the sun in beaches and parks across the country, with people pictured being told by police to move on in Greenwich Park, Richmond Park and St James’s Park in London.

Bakers Greggs said they are planning to open a small number of stores after fast food chain McDonald’s announced they wish to re-open in May and KFC and Burger King already opened a handful of branches.  

Thousands of Britons ignored repeated warnings to stay home as part of ongoing efforts to clamp down on coronavirus by heading to DIY stores, parks and beaches on Sunday. Pictured: People walked along the seafront in Bournemouth

Thousands of Britons ignored repeated warnings to stay home as part of ongoing efforts to clamp down on coronavirus by heading to DIY stores, parks and beaches on Sunday. Pictured: People walked along the seafront in Bournemouth

Thousands of Britons ignored repeated warnings to stay home as part of ongoing efforts to clamp down on coronavirus by heading to DIY stores, parks and beaches on Sunday. Pictured: People walked along the seafront in Bournemouth

People seeking the sun were also seen on Brighton's beaches as police officers told people to go home if they weren't out for essential exercise

People seeking the sun were also seen on Brighton's beaches as police officers told people to go home if they weren't out for essential exercise

People seeking the sun were also seen on Brighton’s beaches as police officers told people to go home if they weren’t out for essential exercise

Police speak to sunbathers as they patrol Greenwich Park in London this afternoon. Under guidelines, you are only supposed to leave your home for exercise

Police speak to sunbathers as they patrol Greenwich Park in London this afternoon. Under guidelines, you are only supposed to leave your home for exercise

Police speak to sunbathers as they patrol Greenwich Park in London this afternoon. Under guidelines, you are only supposed to leave your home for exercise

Queues formed outside B&Q in Watford after the store put in place social distancing measures

Queues formed outside B&Q in Watford after the store put in place social distancing measures

Queues formed outside B&Q in Watford after the store put in place social distancing measures

On Sunday, some DIY shoppers pushed trolleys filled with rolls of carpet while others were seen lifting enormous products into their cars.

Many had to wait in enormous queues as B&Q enforced social distancing rules. 

Some wore masks and made sure they kept apart from others so as not to risk spreading coronavirus. 

In Greenwich Park, officers drove up to people sunbathing to remind them of rules ordering people to stay home except for essential exercise, to buy food or to go to a place of work if they cannot work from home.

Members of the public go out to enjoy the warm weather in Richmond Park, London today, with the park looking extremely busy

Members of the public go out to enjoy the warm weather in Richmond Park, London today, with the park looking extremely busy

Members of the public go out to enjoy the warm weather in Richmond Park, London today, with the park looking extremely busy

This family looked to be enjoying the sun in Green Park, London this afternoon despite the lockdown rules still in place

This family looked to be enjoying the sun in Green Park, London this afternoon despite the lockdown rules still in place

This family looked to be enjoying the sun in Green Park, London this afternoon despite the lockdown rules still in place

Two men were also spoken to by police in Greenwich Park, London this afternoon, as sun-seekers flocked to parks up and down the country despite lockdown rules

Two men were also spoken to by police in Greenwich Park, London this afternoon, as sun-seekers flocked to parks up and down the country despite lockdown rules

Two men were also spoken to by police in Greenwich Park, London this afternoon, as sun-seekers flocked to parks up and down the country despite lockdown rules

Members of the public also enjoyed the warm weather on Putney Embankment in South West London

Members of the public also enjoyed the warm weather on Putney Embankment in South West London

Members of the public also enjoyed the warm weather on Putney Embankment in South West London

In Richmond Park, a police officer on a bicycle spoke to a mother and daughter as they sat under a tree, despite orders from the Government for people to only use parks for exercise once a day

In Richmond Park, a police officer on a bicycle spoke to a mother and daughter as they sat under a tree, despite orders from the Government for people to only use parks for exercise once a day

In Richmond Park, a police officer on a bicycle spoke to a mother and daughter as they sat under a tree, despite orders from the Government for people to only use parks for exercise once a day

Elsewhere, cyclists and walkers flocked along pavements and beach fronts as the sun came out.  

Latest figures released by Public Health England on Sunday showed that another 413 people have died from the virus – the lowest figure this month. 

It means that just over 20,000 people have died since the outbreak began and there have been more than 148,000 cases overall. 

But data from Apple Maps showed that traffic congestion has surged from the start of the month and since the lockdown was announced.   

Walking in London has picked up markedly in the last three days alone, according to Apple Map’s most recent ‘Covid-19 mobility trends’ data. 

Dozens of others were seen in long queues as they held trolleys while waiting to go in a B&Q store in Swansea

Dozens of others were seen in long queues as they held trolleys while waiting to go in a B&Q store in Swansea

Dozens of others were seen in long queues as they held trolleys while waiting to go in a B&Q store in Swansea

Latest figures collected on Friday showed that driving is up 4 per cent and walking has increased 5 per cent among Britons compared to last week

People were also seen sunbathing in St James's Park amid unseasonably warm weather

People were also seen sunbathing in St James's Park amid unseasonably warm weather

People were also seen sunbathing in St James’s Park amid unseasonably warm weather

Shoppers were willing to risk catching coronavirus from others as they took the chance to do some DIY. Pictured: A B&Q store in Edinburgh

Shoppers were willing to risk catching coronavirus from others as they took the chance to do some DIY. Pictured: A B&Q store in Edinburgh

Shoppers were willing to risk catching coronavirus from others as they took the chance to do some DIY. Pictured: A B&Q store in Edinburgh

It appears there has been a sharp increase in human traffic as the number of people walking across the country rose by around 8 percentage points on April 23 from last Saturday. 

The number of people walking, driving, and using public transport networks in the UK took a nosedive in early March, as concern about the spreading coronavirus outside of China – believed to be the country of its origin – intensified and gripped the nation. It plummeted on March 24 – the day after Boris Johnson declared a ‘stay-at-home’ order.

But newly released figures available on Apple Maps indicated the British public are growing restless of life under lockdown as many more take to the roads and the streets. 

What are you doing here? A police officer stood with his bike as he spoke to a couple in Richmond Park on Sunday

What are you doing here? A police officer stood with his bike as he spoke to a couple in Richmond Park on Sunday

What are you doing here? A police officer stood with his bike as he spoke to a couple in Richmond Park on Sunday

The officer patrolled around grassy areas speaking to couples who seemed to be out for more than just exercise

The officer patrolled around grassy areas speaking to couples who seemed to be out for more than just exercise

The officer patrolled around grassy areas speaking to couples who seemed to be out for more than just exercise

Londoners in Green Park also enjoyed the sun. Seven people were pictured sitting near each other as a runner jogged past

Londoners in Green Park also enjoyed the sun. Seven people were pictured sitting near each other as a runner jogged past

Londoners in Green Park also enjoyed the sun. Seven people were pictured sitting near each other as a runner jogged past

Crowded: A queue formed to buy ice cream in Battersea, South West London, as people sought to make the most of the good weather

Crowded: A queue formed to buy ice cream in Battersea, South West London, as people sought to make the most of the good weather

Crowded: A queue formed to buy ice cream in Battersea, South West London, as people sought to make the most of the good weather

They were seen in snaking queues at B&Q in Edinburgh, pictured above

They were seen in snaking queues at B&Q in Edinburgh, pictured above

They were seen in snaking queues at B&Q in Edinburgh, pictured above

Each weekend of April – between the 4th and the 18th – the number of people walking, driving, and ‘transiting’ steadily climbed, even as police forces across the country became tougher on rule-breakers. 

Data from sat nav makers TomTom and the AA suggest there has been an increase in car trips around the UK this month. 

There are more motorists in London, Brighton and Hove, Bristol, Manchester, and Reading out and about this weekend than last week, according to TomTom.   

B&Q is following steps taken by supermarkets by limiting the number of customers in its stores at any one time. 

It has also installed screens at checkouts and put markers on shop floors to help with social distancing. 

Cafes have been told by the Government they can start re-opening for business, while McDonald’s said they are hoping to re-open in May.   

Representatives from the biggest chains, including Costa, Pret a Manger and McDonalds, had asked Environment Secretary George Eustice if they were allowed to start opening up some of their branches again.

And it is understood they were told: ‘You didn’t have to shut in the first place.’

The chains explained that it had been unclear from the rules whether they were entitled to stay open. They were also worried about the safety of their staff, and about a negative reaction from the public to their continuing to trade.

On Sunday, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab blasted ‘irresponsible’ critics for demanding the UK government set out how it will ease the nation’s coronavirus lockdown.  

Tory donors, Cabinet ministers and Sir Keir Starmer have all told Boris Johnson he must publish his strategy for loosening restrictions as the Prime Minister prepares to return to work. 

The shoppers had to keep their distance from each other as they queued to get into B&Q in Edinburgh

The shoppers had to keep their distance from each other as they queued to get into B&Q in Edinburgh

The shoppers had to keep their distance from each other as they queued to get into B&Q in Edinburgh

Basket of goods: Shoppers pushed huge trolleys to put their DIY goods in

Basket of goods: Shoppers pushed huge trolleys to put their DIY goods in

Basket of goods: Shoppers pushed huge trolleys to put their DIY goods in

People also enjoyed the sunshine in St James's Park in London. Official rules say people should only be out for essential exercise once a day, to buy food or to go to work if they cannot work from home

People also enjoyed the sunshine in St James's Park in London. Official rules say people should only be out for essential exercise once a day, to buy food or to go to work if they cannot work from home

People also enjoyed the sunshine in St James’s Park in London. Official rules say people should only be out for essential exercise once a day, to buy food or to go to work if they cannot work from home

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