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Be prepared for wintry weather and respect our outdoor spaces – latest advice from Green Sefton

As wet and wintry conditions persist across the Borough, Green Sefton – Sefton Council’s service that looks after parks, green spaces, coast and countryside – is asking residents to take care and respect the landscape when getting outdoors locally under lockdown restrictions.

Government guidelines are for the public to make use of their local parks and green spaces as a form of exercise. We politely ask those that do, to take any litter home with them and leave nothing but their footprints.

While our beautiful coast is the perfect place to get your daily exercise if you live nearby, please limit this to once a day, with your household or bubble. If you’re not from Sefton, please do not travel to the borough to exercise, we all need to stay in our local area.

Under lockdown guidance you can exercise in a public outdoor space so long as you do so:

  • Only with your household (or support bubble) or if you go out by yourself with one other person (in which case you should stay 2m apart and follow social distancing).
  • Exercise should be limited to once per day.
  • You should not travel outside your local area.

Some frequently asked questions answered by Green Sefton:

Do you grit paths on parks and on the coast when the weather is cold and icy?
In accordance with national guidelines, priority must be given to major carriageways and footways for gritting. It is not possible for the Council to grit every road, footway or public path including our Green Sefton parks and open spaces.

We advise our users and visitors to take care and wear suitable footwear when conditions are bad, especially after periods of heavy rain. When it’s icy you should take extra time and care, and perhaps decide if it’s really necessary to go outdoors.

Why are you still marking sports pitches when grassroots matches can’t take place under lockdown rules?
We need to ensure that lines remain on our pitches so that once football and other grassroots sports can start again, we don’t have to go through the process of initial marking. This process can take weeks to undertake given that Green Sefton maintains around 75 pitches, that’s the equivalent of 57 Anfield Stadiums!  

Conditions are monitored regularly, and pitch marking takes place occasionally for the above reasons.

Green Sefton’s advice and checklist when using the Borough’s outdoor spaces:

  • Always check the weather forecast as conditions can change quickly and check tide times before you set out to the coast.
  • Be prepared for winter weather with appropriate clothing and robust footwear.
  • Remember that the evenings get darker earlier so carrying a torch or wearing reflective clothing would be advisable.
  • Sefton’s entire coastline is environmentally sensitive and protected – please respect this precious landscape.
  • Do not disturb wildlife, livestock or damage habitat – keep a close eye on dogs and keep them away from pools of water or resting birds.
  • Follow the Countryside Code.
  • Camping, BBQs and fires are not permitted.
  • Leave nothing but your footprints – take all your rubbish home with you and recycle wherever possible.
  • Some facilities like public toilets may not be open in winter months at parks and nature reserves.
  • Beach car parks are closed and will not re-open until the spring – please park responsibly in the limited parking available nearby.
  • There are no RNLI patrols on Southport or Ainsdale beaches during winter.
  • If walking or cycling in remote areas, ensure you take a fully charged mobile phone and be aware that signal may be poor.
  • Make sure someone knows where you are going and when you plan to return.
  • Stay local and walk or cycle rather than taking a vehicle where possible.
  • Remember to follow current lockdown COVID-19 guidelines and observe social distancing.

Important changes to how the Green Sefton parks & greenspace offer works within Sefton under lockdown measures can be found in this article: