Greenwich and Tower Hamlets councils have agreed to close Greenwich foot tunnel

Greenwich Foot Tunnel has been closed because of “continued crowds and people not doing the right thing” despite the coronavirus crisis, Greenwich leader Danny Thorpe has announced.

The tunnel between Cutty Sark Gardens in Greenwich and Island Gardens on the Isle of Dogs will be closed for the rest of Sunday, Thorpe said, in what he called “a very regrettable decision”.

“Due to continued crowds and people not doing the right thing, I’ve discussed with the team and the foot tunnel in Greenwich will be closing imminently – bringing a Santander cycle from another part of town doesn’t constitute an essential journey!,” Thorpe said on social media.

He said he had spoken to his counterpart in Tower Hamlets, elected mayor John Biggs, and added: “We don’t have any choice today as there are just too many people.

“It’s worth noting we haven’t had any issues in the week so perhaps a weekend closure will be required, but we will see.”

A weekday closure would cause huge inconvenience for key workers who need to cross the river while also being advised to avoid public transport. However, a later council statement said simply that the tunnels may be closed at weekends – including the four-day Easter break – for the foreseeable future.

Tower Hamlets Council closed Victoria Park last weekend after reports of crowds of people ignoring social distancing rules – to the annoyance of Hackney Council, whose streets run around the edge of the park. Brockwell Park in Herne Hill was closed by Lambeth Council yesterday.

Council leaders including Thorpe have pleaded with people to stay at home this weekend, which has seen the warmest weather for six months. Royal Parks has also warned that its parks, including Greenwich Park, would be closed if people did not keep their distance from one another.


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