Three Rivers District Council is following Watford in taking steps to close all of its playgrounds and play areas.

Both councils are taking action to minimise the spread of coronavirus after people were criticised over the weekend of filling up parks and outdoor spaces and ignoring social distancing advice.

The government is urging the public to either stay at home, or if they do venture out, to stay two metres apart from each other.

This morning, Watford mayor Peter Taylor confirmed the council had made the "difficult decision" to close playgrounds and now Three Rivers, which works very closely with Watford, has announced the same measures.

All 30 playgrounds across Three Rivers have now been locked and there is posting signage at each site alerting visitors to these closures.

Cllr Chris Lloyd, lead member for leisure, said: “I know these are challenging times, and closing the playgrounds may be another blow to the children and their families, however, it is vital that we take every measure we can to help protect our residents.

“Some countries are in total lock down. It is essential that everyone keeps their physical distance but I would encourage you to keep in social contact by electronic means; we need to continue to support one another.

"Please use our parks and open spaces to go for walks, jog or cycle. Do continue to observe hygiene standards and social distancing recommended to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.”

Meanwhile in Hertsmere, the public toilets in King George Recreation Ground in Bushey and Oakmere Park in Potters Bar are now closed.

Bushey Rose Garden and Mary Forsdyke Garden are also now closed.