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Have a safe and spooky autumn

News release 9809, published on 23 Oct 2020
The darker evening and falling leaves have arrived and with them are thoughts about the usual family autumnal activities.

To help keep the borough safe, Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council’s Community Safety Patrol Officers and community safety team are once again working with residents, shops and partner organisations as part of their annual Autumn Nights campaign.

This year, due to the government’s COVID-19 restrictions, the activities and celebrations families usually plan will need to be different. Trick or treating is not recommended and organised bonfire and firework displays will not be held, leaving everyone with fewer options to mark these seasonal events.

Residents are being asked to consider alternative Halloween activities such as pumpkin trails, scavenger hunts and arts and crafts and to consider neighbours, animals and wildlife if lighting fireworks at home.

To help shopkeepers, the CSPOs will be visiting shops to offer advice about the responsible sale of items such as flour, eggs and fireworks. They will be also visit sites where bonfires have been held previously and will work with Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service when necessary.

This year the CSPOs will be out on patrol giving advice on being responsible and respectful of others, but also advice on the government COVID guidelines around the rule of six, face coverings and social distancing.

Cabinet Member for Communities, Culture and Partnerships Cllr Simon Bound said: “We know that the traditional autumn celebrations will be very different this year. But by sticking to the government COVID guidance, we can keep Basingstoke and Deane safe, which will help us to get back to normal sooner.

“Halloween celebrations are not for everyone and can leave some people feeling anxious. Our message to our residents is to be responsible and respectful of others when celebrating this autumn.

“As always, our CSPOs are out and about offering advice and providing reassurance as well as working in advance with shops, partners and residents to help everyone enjoy a safe and peaceful season.”

ENDS

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