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Police boss slams Telegraph and Daily Mail headlines saying English are ‘banned’ from Wales

13 Mar 2021 3 minutes Read
Coverage of the First Minister’s decision in the press

A Police and Crime Commissioner has criticised headlines in the London-based press saying that people from England are banned from holidaying in Wales.

North Wales PCC Arfon Jones pointed out that it was England’s own lockdown rules that prevented people going on holiday elsewhere in the UK until 12 April – not Wales’.

The Daily Mail had claimed in their headline: “Wales BANS English holidaymakers: First Minister Drakeford lifts tourism ban on March 27 – but insists only Welsh people can stay in holiday lets.”

The Telegraph had also reported: “Wales to reopen self-catering stays for Easter – but not for the English.”

But Arfon Jones said the press were “muppets” and that the “headlines are wrong”.

“The reasons why people from England can’t come to Wales is because English Covid-19 regulations prohibits it until the 12th of April,” he said.

“You are like Boris Johnson and haven’t a clue what you’re doing.”

Self-contained accommodation can reopen in Wales from 27 March, when the ‘stay local’ rule will be lifted, as long as cases remained low.

But people in England cannot go on holiday in the UK until 12 April, according to the UK Government’s own rules for England.

‘Mobilised’

Speaking yesterday at the Welsh Government’s press briefing, Wales’ First Minister, Mark Drakeford said that when re-opening self-accommodation sites he was “making the rules for people in Wales”.

“People who let accommodation should not be taking bookings from people who live outside Wales,” he said.

“England will still be in a position where their rules say to minimise travel, no holidays, no staying away from home overnight. And that means they will not be able to take advantage of accommodation in Wales.

“The Government can only proceed on the basis that the law is going to be observed, and it’s for English authorities to enforce the English regulations. We will be talking with our local authority colleagues and with the police next week, just to see if there is anything we need to do to mobilise our own enforcement authorities.

“If the industry were to act irresponsibly, the penalty would be we wouldn’t be able to carry on reopening the industry. I know there are rogues in any part of life. But I think that the industry will absolutely recognise that we want to go beyond self-contained accommodation.

“We want the tourism industry in Wales to have a longer and better season this year than we managed last year. We won’t be able to do that if people undermine the agreement that we have for how to proceed in that first step”.

 

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