Farmer wins fight with council to close off footpath outside his home after saying his son, 7, with cystic fibrosis could catch coronavirus off up to 200 walkers who use it daily
- Gruff Jones’ parents feared walkers could have spread Covid-19 to his home
- Denbighshire Council removed signs warning walkers to stay away from the farm
- The same council has now agreed to shut two paths near Merllyn Farm, Ruthin
- Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19
Farming parents have won a fight with the council to close off a footpath on their land to protect their seven-year-old son who has cystic fibrosis.
Little Gruff Jones’ parents fear the 200 daily walkers using the popular path in North Wales could be spreading coronavirus to their home.
Dad Eilir put signs up outside their farmhouse asking walkers to stay away – but they were taken away by council officials.
The family begged the for the path to be closed, saying it was a ‘life or death,’ situation for Gruff who takes 40 tablets-a-day for his condition.
Denbighshire Council has now relented and shut the footpath at Merllyn Farm in Ruthin, North Wales.
The Jones’ family has won a fight to close footpaths on their land in Ruthin, North Wales, to prevent Gruff, seven, catching coronavirus from walkers
Gruff’s mum explained the family uses the same gate as public walkers for their daily exercise and they needed to protect Gruff, who has a cystic fibrosis
Dad Eilir said: ‘For Gruff this is a life and death situation. He needs to take 40 tablets a day, and he needs to be outdoors to keep his lungs going.
‘He has a daily exercise regime which includes walking, running and using a trampoline. He’s very good at sticking to it because he knows how serious his condition is.
‘He also helps with lambing because it involves him running to catch the lambs, which helps clear mucus from his lungs.
‘But Gruff is at serious risk from coronavirus and every day we worry about him catching it on the farm or that we take it back the house.’
Mum Elliw Angharad said up to 200-walkers a day use the path.
She said: ‘He needs more exercise than most adults or other children because of the condition – he needs to open up his lungs and get rid of the mucus.
Little Gruff Jones, pictured above, has a daily exercise routine that includes running, walking and using the trampoline to get plenty of air into his lungs as he battles cystic fibrosis
‘We use the same gates as everyone else. It could be us bringing coronavirus to Gruff.’
A spokesperson for Denbighshire council said: ‘Due to the farm being home to a child who could be very vulnerable to the Covid-19 virus, it was felt the increased use of these paths was likely to be of mutual concern to all.
‘It was agreed that two footpaths in the area will therefore be closed until the situation eases – although the matter will be kept under regular review.
‘The council apologises for the inconvenience this action may well cause but would ask that walkers respect this decision given its context and make use of the many other walking opportunities available in the vicinity.’
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