Seal beach patrols by police at Horsey and Winterton
PUBLISHED: 14:28 08 January 2018 | UPDATED: 14:51 08 January 2018
They are beaches famous for their seals and adorable looking pups that attract large numbers of people eager to see them loll around on the sand or take a dip in the North Sea.
And now the beaches at Horsey and Winterton have been the focus of a police crime prevention team which helped to show people how to respect hundreds of seals during the pupping season.
On Saturday officers from Norfolk police’s rural crime task force patrolled the beaches in partnership with volunteers from the Friends of Horsey Seals.
MORE: record year for pups
As well as providing a deterrent to offenders, the patrols, which were part of Operation Randall, gave police a chance to meet the public and explain why they should keep clear of seals by watching them from a distance.
Both beaches and the surrounding areas had 1,820 seal pups this season as of January 4 - a record season. Last month people expressed outrage after a man was believed to attempt to take a photo of a child on a seal at Winterton.
PC Andy Brown said: “Over the weekend we were in the Horsey and Winterton areas working with partners at Friends of Horsey Seals to increase knowledge and understanding of the seals.
“People should remember, they are wild animals and it’s important to give them their distance and the respect they deserve.
“We want everyone to enjoy the seals in a safe legal way and fully support the work of the volunteers.”
MORE; outrage at seal photograph
It was the second patrol carried out by the police unit this pupping season and Peter Ansell, chairman of the Friends of Horsey Seals, said the task force had already agreed to carry out four patrols next season from November to January.
Mr Ansell said there had been problems in the past with fencing being vandalised and some fence posts vanishing.
He said: “It is nice to have law and order down here. They walked about and talked to people about the beaches and seals.”
There about 150 volunteers at the Friends of Horsey Seals, with about 15 to 20 on duty everyday.
To become a volunteer at The Friends visit friendsofhorseyseals.co.uk