Police lockdown guidance outlines driving for exercise and shopping rules in full

Guidance has been issued to police which states the rules around exercise and shopping - and lists other rules for the next three weeks of lockdown.

Friday, 17th April 2020, 11:51 am
Updated Friday, 17th April 2020, 3:02 pm

The guidance issued to police forces from the National Police Chiefs Council has been made public this week and shows advice for officers when interpreting lockdown laws and enforcing them.

The guidance includes how police should manage shopping, exercise, key workers and allowing people to leave home to avoid arguments.

The advice says key workers should not be asked for ID, and that people are allowed to buy non-essential items like snacks and luxuries alongside their regular shopping.

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This is what police say is allowed according to the guidance

What does the police lockdown guidance say?

Shopping - the rules explained

Listed under 'likely to be reasonable':

- Buying several days’ worth of food, including luxury items and alcohol.

- Buying a small amount of a staple item or necessity (eg, a newspaper, pet food, a loaf of bread or pint of milk).

- Collecting surplus basic food items from a friend.

- Buying tools and supplies to repair a fence panel damaged in recent bad weather.

Under 'not likely to be reasonable:

- Buying paint and brushes, simply to redecorate a kitchen.

What counts as reasonable reasons to go outside for exercise?

- going for a run or cycle or practicing yoga. Walking in the countryside or in cities. Attending an allotment.

- Driving to countryside and walking (where far more time is spent walking than driving).

- Stopping to rest or to eat lunch while on a long walk.

- Exercising more than once per day - the only relevant consideration is whether repeated exercise on the same day can be considered a ‘reasonable excuse’ for leaving home.

What is not likely to be reasonable exercise:

- Driving for a prolonged period with only brief exercise.

- A short walk to a park bench, when the person remains seated for a much longer period.

What counts as reasonable travel to work:

- A key worker or other essential worker travelling to work where it is not reasonably possible to work from home.

- A non-key worker or non-essential key worker travelling to work where it is not reasonably possible to work from home

- A person delivering food packages to vulnerable people.

What is not likely to be reasonable for work:

- A person who can work from home choosing to work in a local park.

- A person knocking on doors offering to do cashin-hand work.

Other reasonable reasons to leave home:

- Taking an animal for treatment.

- Moving to a friend’s address for several days to allow a ‘cooling-off’ following arguments at home.

- Providing support to vulnerable people.

What is not likely to be seen as reasonable:

- Visiting a vet’s surgery in person to renew a prescription (where this could be done over the phone).

- Visiting a friend in their address or meeting in public to socialise.

A spokesman for West Yorkshire Police said: "These powers are about keeping people safe and the starting point is everyone stays at home.

"Our officers use their judgement every day when applying the law and this is no different. Driving for several hours to exercise when not necessary would not be appropriate. Officers will consider all the factors when engaging with the public and continue to encourage people to stay at home.

"Our approach has not changed. Officers will engage, explain and encourage, and then only if necessary will enforce.

"We need everyone to help us and our colleagues in the NHS by staying at home."

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