Public reminded, "Don't stay, take it away" as lockdown continues

Published Thursday, 7th May 2020

Don't Stay, Take it Away logo

Takeaway customers are being reminded they should consume their purchases at home under the Covid-19 lockdown regulations.

With the lockdown continuing and an indication from the Government that the rules will not change over the bank holiday weekend – it is important the public stays at home to protect the NHS and save lives.

Although Essex residents have largely respected the regulations, authorities are increasingly finding some are ignoring the spirit of the lockdown – in particular using takeaways but eating their food nearby rather than taking it home. That is why councils across Essex and Essex Police have worked together to develop the ‘Don’t stay, take it away’ campaign for local businesses, residents and visitors.

Under the Covid-19 regulations food outlets can trade as takeaways, but have a responsibility to make sure customers do not congregate outside, even if they do not own the land.

BJ Harrington, Chief Constable of Essex Police, thanked those who had been observing the lockdown said: “We understand just how tough it is on everybody, and I am so pleased that here in Essex everyone has by and large followed the rules,”

“The longer the lockdown continues the harder it becomes, but it is so important that we continue to observe the rules and follow the guidance from scientists to ensure that we don’t undo all of the good work done so far.

“With that in mind while the lockdown continues, if you do get a takeaway and collect it yourself please leave straight away, take it home, and eat it there.”

Authorities in Essex are also working with local businesses to see how they can be supported with reinforcing the ‘take it away’ message with their customers.

Cllr Neil Stock OBE, Leader of Tendring District Council, added: “Businesses are adapting their offer to include takeaways, and we absolutely support that as our traders are a vital part of the local economy.

“But that only works if their customers – the general public – use them sensibly and continue to respect the guidelines on social distancing. So please, don’t stay and take it away.”

Cllr Martin Terry, cabinet member for public protection for Southend-on-Sea Borough Council, said: “We know our beaches and open spaces are beautiful and people are very tempted to pop down to seafronts or parks and enjoy them along with an ice cream or packet of chips.

“People are entitled to travel a short distance to take their exercise, and to use takeaways, but they must respect the guidelines and see that through. Please do not come to our beaches for a picnic, or have an ice cream on a bench – don’t stay, take it away.”