Telford Town Park was given to the people of the town with covenants protecting it as a park with free and open access for all in perpetuity.
But Telford and Wrekin Council have a different view - they believe they are the "land owners" and if they want to harrass people distributing leaflets or people without children simply walking they can:
In the case of distributing leaflets in the Town Park, we ask that individuals or organisations wishing to do so request permission by completing an application form and supplying us with necessary supplementary documentation. This information will give us, as Land owners, the reassurance that the activities requested by outside groups will not compromise our duty of care to young people and the more vulnerable.
Note: "Land owners". The council isn't maintaining the locality as elected representative of the people it believes it owns the land!
And this seemingly fascist organisation preys on fear with a heap of pious twitterings to try and justify its stance and get people on side:
I make no apologies for putting the safety of our children and young people first. Unfortunately there are people at large in our society who are unable to be trusted in this context and we have had unfortunate incidents in the Town Park which we have had to deal with very sensitively. If this means that we have then to take precautions which some people feel are “over the top”, then so be it. We would prefer in these instances to be as safe as possible beforehand, rather than sorry afterwards.
So, if you are without children and want to walk in the park, you can't. And if you want to dress up as a penguin and distribute leaflets on climate change in the park you can't. At least not without a CRB check and various restrictions being imposed.
Sounds like Telford is sleep-walking into something quite terrifying.
Rather like the rest of England.
If you use the park, or simply value freedom, join the protest - Wonko has the details here.