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MP says five mile restriction will penalise area

Created on 29/05/2020 @ 13:51
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Residents in Montgomeryshire will be penalised by the Welsh Government's "five mile" rule on travel restrictions, according to Montgomeryshire MP, Craig Williams.

He has expressed his concern over the decision to impose the five-mile travel restriction when seeing friends and family within Wales and how this decision "will directly penalise rural communities such as Montgomeryshire."

First Minister Mark Drakeford today announced that from Monday different households will be able to meet outdoors. However, they will be required to stay in their local area, within five miles.

However, the First Minister did suggest people living in rural Wales should use their judgement.

Mr Williams said: “Whilst I very much welcome the decision by the Welsh Government to begin to ease the current lockdown restrictions in Wales by allowing two households to meet outdoors, the inclusion of a five-mile restriction adversely penalises rural areas such as Montgomeryshire.
“Whereas the Welsh Labour Government might only be thinking of the towns and cities within South Wales, much of Wales is populated by rural communities who do not live within five-miles of their family and friends. It is wrong to impose a rule that only benefits some sections of Wales’ population, yet directly punishes others.
“I very much hope that the Welsh Government will review this decision urgently, so as to allow everyone within Wales and Montgomeryshire to see their family friends from next week.”

The Drakeford said: “If you can manage within a five mile radius for food and medicines and essential things that's what you should do.

“If your bit of Wales means you've got to go further, use your judgement. But what I'm asking people to do is to use that judgement seriously and soberly.

"The further you travel, the greater the risk that is posed to yourself and others of coronavirus ending up in parts of Wales where we've succeeded in keeping it to a minimum. Nobody, I think, wants to do that."
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