CONCERNED councillors say Frinton has been deluged with visitors seeking fresh air and exercise during the lockdown.

The popular resort was invaded by daytrippers last summer after the first lockdown’s restrictions were eased.

But town councillors claim the third national lockdown has brought swathes of people to the seafront for their daily exercise.

At a meeting of Frinton and Walton Town Council, Nick Turner said: “It’s been almost as busy over Christmas as it was during the summer. In fact, I now cycle to Walton to be able to see the sea.

“If I go on the seafront in Frinton, it’s too busy.

“There’s no social distancing and people are wandering around in groups of eight or ten.

“The whole of the Esplanade is full up with cars – it’s almost as bad as the summer.

“It’s certainly very busy, for which I’m pleased, but the social distancing has gone out of the window. I’m looking forward to the rain and the cold when no-one appears.”

In November, the council decided to carry on paying £233,000 a year to keep its six police community support officers rather than ditching them in favour of private security.

It had raised concerns new local police commanders were not allowing the PCSOs to enforce some bylaws despite Frinton being “under siege” from unruly visitors.

Walton councillor Delyth Miles said she was also concerned about the number of people visiting the beaches and the Naze cliffs in Walton.

She said: “People are angry and are getting anxious in my part of Walton because we are getting flocks of people in.

“People are not social distancing in Walton either “I’ve had loads of phone calls and emails asking me can we stop visitors coming from out of the area to our beaches and a request to lock gates for Naze.

“My response so far is the district council doesn’t have powers it had in the first lockdown because the Government haven’t restricted people from travelling for their daily exercise.

“In the first lockdown there was a clear requirement that people exercise near their homes and weren’t to travel.

“Back then, the district council was proactive and even boarded off the entrance to the beaches in Walton, but they couldn’t actually stop people going on the beaches because it’s Crown land “But we don’t have those powers now. The restrictions are lesser than they were first time round.”