Sunseekers leave park looking like rubbish tip as Brits lap up hot weather

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Mounds of rubbish have been left strewn across a city park after thousands of sunseekers gathered on the hottest day of the year so far.

Shocking photos show beer bottles, disposable barbecues, food wrappers and shards of glass cluttering up the grass in the aftermath of revellers making the most of the 21C heat.

Volunteers joined council workers deployed to Woodhouse Moor in Leeds, West Yorks, on Wednesday morning (March 31) for a mammoth clean-up operation.

Photos taken at the park on Tuesday showed groups of up to 20 people tightly packed together in some parts from late morning to the evening.

Many of those in attendance were drinking alcohol, playing music and having barbecues – despite signs in place instructing people not to cook their own food on the grounds.

Although lockdown restrictions were eased on Monday, people are still required to social distance and stay local as much as possible.

In response to pictures of the park, Stop Leeds Fly Tipping wrote on Twitter: "If you were one of the hundreds of people at #HydePark in #Leeds yesterday, may we suggest you do the right thing and get down there this morning and help clean this up!

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"Not only was it irresponsible being there given #COVID19, it’s also shocking just to leave the park like this."

Responding to the scenes, a Leeds City Council spokesman said: "Whilst recognising that people will be keen to meet up with friends and family in our parks and green spaces given the relaxation in some coronavirus restrictions this week.

"We are asking residents to still fully respect all of the guidance currently in place. This includes those rules relating to social distancing and gatherings.

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"This is vitally important if we are to continue to protect the health and wellbeing of ourselves and others. It is important that those who have had a vaccination continue to follow the rules.

"The full impact of the vaccine on transmission of the virus is not yet known, therefore it may be possible to spread the virus, putting others at risk.

"We hope our residents can enjoy the good weather and our amenities while still adhering to the guidelines."

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A clean up operation has also been launched in Liverpool where bins were left overflowing and surrounded by piles of empty cans and bottles

Images from Sefton Park on Wednesday morning show council refuse workers picking up litter across the park, while others show large numbers of bottles and cans left near to overflowing bins.

A Liverpool Council spokesperson said bins in parks were emptied regularly and that people should take litter home if one is full.

The spokeswoman said: “We welcome the increased usage in our parks by local residents, however we do encourage people to act responsibly.

"The existing park litter bins are emptied on a regular basis by our teams and in some parks we have added additional capacity with large Euro event bins.

“Regular litter picks are undertaken by our staff in partnership with the ‘Friends of’ groups, however we would ask people to help keep our parks tidy by taking their rubbish home with them, particularly if they see that a bin is already overflowing.”

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