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Middlesbrough parks closed in virus fight

Middlesbrough's parks and play areas are to close to help combat the spread of Coronavirus.

The move is in support of the latest guidance from the Government and Public Health England over the need for 'social distancing'.

Closures will come into effect today at Albert Park, Stewart Park, Pallister Park, Thorntree Park, Hemlington Lake, and Fairy Dell.

People are being urged to avoid gatherings in public spaces, with pubs, restaurants, leisure centres and other venues currently closed.

The advice is for people to keep at least 2m apart to make it more difficult for the virus to spread, and to help protect those at risk.

However the weekend's fine weather saw crowds flocking to seaside resorts and outdoor attractions such as Roseberry Topping.

Announcing the closures, Middlesbrough Mayor Andy Preston said: "We've tried to give people the ability to use these facilities, but the bad behaviour over the weekend has left us no choice but to close them.

"By blatantly ignoring a few simple guidelines, they're putting themselves and others at risk.

"So for everyone's safety all our parks and play areas will close today until further notice."

For the latest local updates and information, visit the coronavirus page or like/follow COVID-19 Boro on Facebook or Twitter.

Read the latest advice from Government and Public Health England.