Portsmouth leads the way for following stay-at-home coronavirus pandemic advice despite balmy Easter weather

PEOPLE across the region were praised for following the government advice and staying at home on Good Friday despite the balmy conditions - with Portsmouth toasted for leading the way across the UK.

By Steve Deeks
Saturday, 11th April 2020, 6:00 am

Fears were raised that people would be tempted out as glorious sunshine bathed the south coast.

But the government’s desperate pleas for people to stick to strict lockdown measures to combat the deadly virus were taken on board by residents.

Politicians across the area praised the efforts of those who are remaining steadfast in their determination to follow the guidance.

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Drone pictures of a very quiet Southsea on Good Friday Picture: Solent Sky Services

Leader of Portsmouth City Council Gerald Vernon-Jackson said Portsmouth was leading by example to the rest of the country.

He said: ‘We are following the advice very well in Portsmouth and better than in many other places.

‘Pompey is showing the rest of the country how it is done. What we are doing is incredible.’

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Canoe Lake in Southsea during 'lockdown' on Good Friday Picture: Sarah Standing (100420-7719)

The Lib Dem councillor said the claims were backed up by Google, which is now tracking people’s movements during the pandemic.

The readings are based on location data gathered via the Google Maps app or one of the firm's other mobile services.

He added: ‘Google can see how much traffic and travel is going on and we are doing better than most other places for staying at home.’

Stephen Morgan, MP for Portsmouth South, echoed the appreciation. He said: ‘The message couldn’t be clearer. Stay home to save lives.

Drone pictures of a very quiet Southsea on Good Friday Picture: Solent Sky Services

‘With coronavirus bringing our normal lives to a halt, our city might be silent and our roads deserted, but we are all in this together to protect every single person in every community.

‘Portsmouth people are stepping up and the vast majority are doing what is asked of them. Let’s keep that up for the health of all of us.

‘My huge thanks to all those on the front line who are working over this bank holiday weekend keeping our communities safe and well at this time of need.’

Alan Mak, MP for Havant, said: ‘Despite the good weather, people across the Havant constituency are playing their full part in staying at home to protect the NHS and save lives.

A quiet Lee-on-the-Solent seafront on Good Friday Picture: Sarah Standing (100420-7757)

‘It’s an excellent community effort to tackle coronavirus, and reflects our collective determination to get through the outbreak by working together and doing our bit to keep everyone safe.’

Suella Braverman, MP for Fareham, said: ‘Whilst it has been a very difficult time for many people it is tempting to go leave home and enjoy the sunny weather this weekend.

‘I urge all residents to follow the government guidance of staying at home so that we protect the NHS and save lives. This is vital if we are to fight this crisis as swiftly as possible and I thank all those Fareham residents who are doing their bit to keep us safe.’

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Southsea beach on Good Friday Picture: Sarah Standing (100420-745)

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