Lewisham Council has warned its parks could close if residents do not follow the Government’s social distancing guidelines.  

The borough has 45 parks and open spaces, “a lifeline for families and those who do not have access to a garden or outdoor space”.  

According to the council, the “overwhelming majority” of residents followed the guidance over the bank holiday weekend in a bid to stop the spread of coronavirus.  

Cllr Sophie McGeevor, cabinet member for environment and transport, thanked residents and urged them to continue social distancing to avoid further restrictions.  

She said: “We’re lucky to have so many green spaces in our borough, and for many of our families, particularly those without access to gardens, they’re an absolute lifeline. 

“That is why it’s vital that we follow Government guidance on social distancing so that our parks can stay open. 

“Our parks staff are here to make sure everyone is safe, so please give them the respect they deserve.  

“We’re living in unprecedented times and unless people follow Government guidance, there could be further restrictions on movement and that means our parks could close.  

“But if we follow Government guidance we could continue to enjoy our beautiful parks.” 

She added: “Going outside is good for mental and physical wellbeing, so keeping our parks open for the people who need them most is vital.” 

The social distancing guidelines urge people to stay as local as possible, keep at least two metres from others, not to gather in large groups, and only use parks once a day to walk, run, or cycle.  

People should only go out for essential items such as food and medicine.