Police & Council condemn planning of ‘Freedom Fun Day’ in Barnsley

South Yorkshire Police and Barnsley Council are investigating the organisation of an illegal gathering planned for this weekend.

Barnsley Freedom Fun Day is planned to take place in Locke Park, a 47-acre public park just south of the town centre.

In a statement, Barnsley Council, said: “It’s illegal to hold events at the moment. It’s also irresponsible and undermines the hard work the people of Barnsley and our key workers are doing to get the borough through this.”

Every region in South Yorkshire is above the national average for Covid-19 cases per 100,000. Barnsley is top of them all, and one of the country’s major coronavirus hotspots.

Malcolm Price, treasurer of the Friends of Locke Park group, said: “I’m sure the organisers will be considering their irresponsible actions with the threat of a £10,000 fine should they proceed.”

Mr Price also mentioned the angry reaction from locals towards a covid-denier group in the park last year.

He said: “Should [the gathering] turn up their reception will certainly be hostile.” 

People can begin to look forward to life outside of lockdown as the government’s roadmap is now underway.

However, Barnsley Council is urging residents not to deviate from the plan.

The council statement said: “The persistent, stubborn Covid-19 rates in Barnsley are frustrating for everyone, but we all have a responsibility to do all we can to make sure we move forward on our journey out of lockdown.”

The next phase of lockdown easing will be no earlier than 22 March, when six people, or two households, will be allowed to meet outdoors.

Written by Harry Harrison

Head of Sport at Forge Press and DoubleClutchUK writer and podcaster. Twitter: @harryharrisonFP

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