Anti-social camping in the Lake District was targeted in a hard-hitting multi-agency operation at the weekend.
Joint patrols are now being carried out throughout the national park during the summer with the aim of stamping out damage to the environment, including the setting of fires.
The operation around Keswick over the weekend was part of “robust action” being taken by the police to prevent damage being done to the Lake District’s habitats and heritage.
In recent weeks, there has been a large increase in the number of campers and campervans on private land in the Lake District National Park and this has often been associated with the dumping of equipment, littering, fires and criminal damage to trees and fences.
During this operation five campervan owners were spoken to at Honister Pass regarding issues including a fire and rubbish.
Six bags of rubbish had already been left behind, which were removed by the National Trust.
Three women were also discovered camping at Calf Close Bay on Derwentwater with a small ground fire.
The site was inspected by rangers from the National Trust, and no damage was found.
All three were cautioned in relation to a bylaw breach for camping and a ground fire breach. These breaches carry possible fines up to £3,000.
Other enforcements during the operation included:
- Eighteen cars reported for motoring offences;
- One motorist warned at Stair for obstruction;
- One Traffic Offence Report for driving off-road at Newlands Pass;
- Two people stopped and searched under poaching by night regulations they were asked to return home;
- Five people in breach of bylaws;
- Five stop searches of vehicles.
The partners involved at the weekend included officers based in Keswick, the Allerdale pro-active team and representatives from United Utilities.
Sergeant Scott Adams said: “We welcome the return of visitors to the Lake District and encourage all those who seek to explore the area responsibly.
“Campsites are now open across the national park and we encourage visitors to book pitches ahead of their visits.
“The constabulary and its partners will continue to maintain efforts to protect and preserve the unique Lake District environment.
“We will not tolerate the damage or destruction of Lakeland habitats or heritage and will take robust action where necessary.”