CORONAVIRUS: We must work together in lockdown to keep everyone safe, says Lincolnshire police chief

As Lincolnshire begins its first day under the second national lockdown, the county’s police chief has called on the public to work with them to keep everyone safe.

Chief Constable Bill Skelly

England is set to have the new restrictions in place for at least a month, until December 2, in a bid to stem the rise in coronavirus cases.

The lockdown calls on people not to leave their homes other than for certain specific reasons like work, essential shopping, exercise, and child care.

It will also mean all but non-essential shops will be closed, pubs and restaurants only able to offer takeaways and deliveries, and indoor and outdoor leisure facilities, entertainment venues, and personal care facilities like beauty salons, shutting their doors.

Chief Constable of Lincolnshire Bill Skelly said the force would continue its policy of engaging first – but there would be a shift in emphasis which would see officers moving to the encouragement stage more quickly.

And he warned that officers would enforce the law if people refused to respond to either of these approaches.

"The policing approach in Lincolnshire has been to engage with you, to explain the rules, to encourage you to comply with them, and on very rare occasions when it's felt that that encouragement hasn't been enough, to enforce the law,” he said.

"Our expectation is that we will continue to approach things in that way. We have learnt more about this virus and how it's transmitted (and) we expect you as members of the public to understand more about what is required.

"So you will find that we will move more quickly towards encouragement, and in those rare occasions where that doesn't work, to continue to use enforcement.

"The more that we can work together to fight this virus, the more successful and the more safe we will be.

"We're facing challenges around this national lockdown, but if we do so together, if we comply with the advice of Government, and the rules and the laws, then I'm sure we'll come out of it stronger."

Chief Constable Skelly thanked the public for their local and national effort so far and said that had to continue.

He also moved to reassure people over the fact that the national terrorist threat level had been raised to severe in recent days.

“We will respond to that raised threat level in the appropriate way. My advice is to be alert but not alarmed.”