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Lifeguards return to Suffolk beach this weekend

PUBLISHED: 14:00 02 July 2020 | UPDATED: 14:00 02 July 2020

Southwold's north beach will have RNLI lifeguards patrolling this weekend Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Southwold's north beach will have RNLI lifeguards patrolling this weekend Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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RNLI lifeguards are set to return to Southwold beach this weekend as more coronavirus lockdown restrictions are eased.

RNLI lifeguards returned to Lowestoft's south beach in mid-June Picture: NIGEL MILLARDRNLI lifeguards returned to Lowestoft's south beach in mid-June Picture: NIGEL MILLARD

RNLI lifeguards are set to return to Southwold beach this weekend as more coronavirus lockdown restrictions are eased.

Patrols have been scaled back over the course of the lockdown, with the RNLI warning lifeguards will only be on duty at around 30% of beaches throughout the peak summer season.

But more and more lifeguards have returned to beaches across the UK, in recent weeks, with the service resuming on Lowestoft’s south beach in the middle of June.

Southwold’s north beach will be only the second in Suffolk to have lifeguards patrolling since the lockdown was introduced on March 23.

Lifeguards will be wearing personal protective equipment and maintaining social distancing to reduce the risk of spreading Covid-19, the RNLI has confirmed.

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Coastal towns are braced for an influx of visitors this weekend, especially on ‘Super Saturday’, as the government has lifted restrictions to allow for pubs and restaurants to reopen.

East Suffolk Council have already warned businesses and visitors to not “blow” the opportunity as the county returns to almost pre-lockdown life.

Darren Lewis, RNLI lifesaving manager for north and east, said this summer could be “busiest ever” for lifeguards due to the pandemic.

He said: “We must all continue to be aware that the risks from the pandemic have not gone away, but if people work with us and the other emergency services by following social distancing and other government guidance, we hope to be able to continue to provide lifeguard services this season.

“I’d like to thank all our partners – from Her Majesty’s Coastguard, to local councils and landowners – who are also working hard to help us patrol as many beaches as possible.”

Letitia Smith, East Suffolk cabinet member for communities, leisure and tourism, added: “Our beaches are some of the best in the country and we want people to be able to enjoy spending time at the beach whilst being mindful of their own safety and the safety of others.

“This includes keeping away from other people and using common sense when deciding which area of beach to visit. If it feels too crowded, it is too crowded and we would urge people to look for somewhere less congested instead.”

MORE: Lifeguards set to return to popular beach


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