Police have escorted visiting drivers out of Dorset and have been issuing fines as they clamp down on non-essential journeys amid the coronavirus crisis over Easter.

Motorists are continuing to ignore repeated warnings about staying at home and have been travelling long distances to get to Dorset.

However they faced police checks at the Dorset border and were barred from entering the county.

The same officers manning the checkpoint later dealt with a separate incident involving a man who allegedly coughed at police telling them he had the coronavirus.

Meanwhile in Purbeck, motorists who attempted to drive to beauty spots to enjoy the warm weather found the police waiting for them and were handed fines.

A spokesman for Dorset Traffic Cops said: "We have had officers at various strategic routes into the county.

"At the start of the shift a couple of our officers assisted colleagues in Hampshire following a fatal collision involving a pedestrian on the M27.

"In the west of the county on the border with Devon and on our northern border with Somerset and Wiltshire the majority of vehicles stopped were for essential journeys. Thank you.

"We have also assisted officers in Poole with a couple of vehicle stops, including people demanding entry to their holiday caravan. They didn’t visit their caravan in the end.

"However, on the A31 on the border with Hampshire a number of vehicles were stopped where the travel was not essential."

Some of the reasons given were:

* Two families from London who had come to visit the beach as it was a nice day

* A family from London, who had hired a campervan the day before with the intention to come to Dorset to self isolate

* A couple from London (again) who had come to Dorset to go spear fishing

* A man from Aylesbury who was visiting a friend to brush up on his CV

* A few couples from Southampton who had come to walk their dog

Police said a number of vehicles were escorted from the county

Meanwhile one car was seized for no insurance and two other tickets were issued for 'identified offences'.

The spokesman added: "Then at the end of my shift I assisted our colleagues in the ambulance service with a violent male who was causing issues and threatening to jump out of the ambulance on a dual carriageway and assault people."

The spokesman said the man was escorted to hospital, where it was said he attempted to assault officers.

It is alleged he coughed towards officers, saying he had coronavirus.

A man is helping police with enquiries.

Purbeck Police was on patrol in Lulworth on Saturday and officers were on shift for less than a hour and had already stopped numerous vehicles trying to enter the area.

A spokesman for Purbeck Police said: "Their excuses for travelling did not fit into the government guidelines and they have therefore been issued fines and sent back home."

Later that day, officers went to Ferry Road in Studland and found a number of cars parked along the road.

The spokesman added: "This is not being responsible and keeping to the spirit of the government's instructions.

"Driving to beauty spots for exercise is not essential travel.

"Some members of the public have been given words of advice and sent on their way. If you were parked anywhere along Ferry Road (on Saturday) your registration has been noted. If you are unsure of the current advice on travel restrictions visit gov.uk

"Please stay at home and have consideration for others."

Additional reporting by Lottie Welch