The local lockdowns announced recently in Blaenau Gwent, Bridgend, Caerphilly, Merthyr, Newport and Rhondda Cynon Taff will all affect outdoor activity to some extent, since the general guidance for visitors is that “you can drive through these Counties without stopping but cannot visit them without reasonable excuse”.
Our understanding is that no-one may visit these Counties for outdoor activity “without reasonable excuse”. Welsh Government guidance does permit ‘work’ as a ‘reasonable excuse’, so groups operating entirely for work or professional training purposes – or those operating entirely within (rather than ‘visiting’) each individual county – should make their own judgement on whether to undertake activity.
- the lockdown in Rhondda Cynon Taff that took effect from 6pm on Thu 17 Sep affects Dinas Rock and Sychryd Gorge (which are both entirely within the County – and Dinas Rock car park is only accessible by visiting from Powys!); the River Hepste (inc. Sgwd yr Eira) and the Mellte Gorge south of the Hepste confluence (since both rivers form the County boundary);
- the lockdown in Merthyr Tydfil that takes effect from 6pm on Tue 22 Sep will affect Morlais Quarry and at least the southwest quadrant of Pontsticill Reservoir (including the car park on the Western shore – but perhaps not the northern launch point on the causeway, nor Pentwyn Reservoir, since these are within Powys!); and
- all the lockdowns will of course affect all upland areas, crags, rivers and caves within their boundaries.
We are waiting to hear whether any outdoor sites are being formally closed as part of the lockdowns and will pass on any further news that we receive.