BORIS Johnson today warned the open air does not protect against coronavirus saying people must stay at least two metres apart.

The PM said while being outdoors is still "crucial for health, physical and mental well-being" his advice must be taken seriously or he will have to get tough.

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The Prime Minister said: "Don't think that fresh air in itself automatically provides some immunity.

"I want to thank the vast majority of people who are really behaving incredibly responsibly and following the guidance and advice on social distancing.

"Some people either through heedlessness or whatever are not making it easy for us because they are….congregating in a way that is likely to spread the disease.

"We need to think very carefully now about how we take steps to correct that.

"The best thing that everybody can do – if you're going outside, observe social distancing. Stay two metres apart – it's not such a difficult thing. Do it.

"The more we comply now, the faster we will beat it and the faster we will get through it."

His warning came just nine days after he said it was still okay for people to attend packed football matches.

On March 13 he confirmed his government was still only considering banning major sporting events.

However, as the death toll in the UK continues to spiral the PM's stance has clearly changed.


He also told how he is prepared to step up and enforce a more serious lockdown policy if people do not play it safe.

Mr Johnson said: "Many many people do not have access, let's face it, to private green spaces where they can do that and that's why parks, open spaces are so absolutely crucial for our country and for our society.

"But when we do that we have to do that responsibly… my message is you've got to do this in line with the advice.

"Otherwise if you don't do it responsibly… as you suggest there is going to be no doubt that we will have to bring forward further measures and we are certainly keeping that under constant review.

"Going outside now and taking exercise – you've got to take account of the medical advice and observe social distancing.

"If people can't do that, won't do that, don't do that then yes of course we're going to have to bring in tougher measures."

His warning came as Brits flocked to parks and beaches as the sun came out.

Richmond Park was so full of cyclists, cars and walkers police were called, as people failed to keep their distance.

The PM made it clear: "I don't think you need to use your imagination very much to see where we might have to go, and we will think about this very very actively in the next 24 hours.


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"We need to think about the kind of measures we've seen elsewhere – other countries that have been forced to bring in restrictions on people's movements altogether, now as I say I don't want to do that."

Deputy chief medical officer Dr Jenny Harries added people who were congregating were "dangerous" and making outside environments "unavailable" to others.

The PM has said repeatedly that the nation should not mingle with each other and practise social distancing.

Experts have said that not doing so is selfish and that if people properly do follow the instructions to remain apart they will save lives.


Yesterday it was announced the National Trust would close all of its parks and gardens, with many other large parks around the country following suit – but many have remained open.

The PM ordered pubs and restaurants to close their doors on Friday night – only allowing them to provide takeaways.

It came after Brits failed to take his plea not to go to the pub and were still hitting the town throughout the week.

It comes as 281 Brits have died from the virus, with 5,683 infected with the killer bug.

Today letters to around 1.5million of Britain's most vulnerable have been sent out by the government – telling them to stay at home to save their lives.

Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick confirmed this morning thousands at risk of not recovering from coronavirus have officially been told to stay in for 12 weeks.

 

 

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