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Reports of second home owners still travelling down to Cornwall

Reports of second home owners still travelling down to Cornwall

Published by Sarah Yeoman at 6:19am 28th April 2020. (Updated at 7:19am 28th April 2020)

There are calls for tougher rules on people travelling to their second homes in Cornwall during lockdown.

West Cornwall MP Derek Thomas says he is still getting reports of visitors coming down to local towns and villages.

He wants to see an increased police patrols in the Duchy to help encourage people to stay at home.

Mr Thomas has taken up the case with the Police and Crime Commissioner and Chief Inspector calling on them to clarify advice and increase their  presence.

The guidance from Devon and Cornwall Police is: “Do not travel to Devon and Cornwall. Please stay at home and do not undertake travel that isn’t essential. We understand that people may have second homes in Devon or Cornwall but we urge you not to travel to them.”

However, the West Cornwall MP says police have 'one arm tied behind their backs' as the regulations haven’t been tested in court.

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“Although the GOV.UK website states ‘Essential travel does not include visits to second homes’, there are a number of ‘reasonable excuses’ which I accept cloud the issue for the police.

“They have done a great job in turning people back when they can but their job would be made easier if the regulations were tightened up.

“In Wales, they are strengthening the lockdown rules by making it clear people cannot remain away from the place they live in a bid to discourage people from using their second homes and I would welcome this sort of change being made in England as well.”

Derek Thomas, MP for West Cornwall

Mr Thomas, who has spoken to Government ministers on the issue, added:

“So many of the people who have contacted me about this are elderly and/or vulnerable and they have genuine concerns that they may be at risk from people travelling down here from other parts of the country.”

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