Man who drove 30 miles for takeaway and eight found in shed among UK Covid fines

Forces across the UK have broken up parties and meet-ups and fined people for visiting beauty spots despite lockdown rules
Man who drove 30 miles for takeaway and eight found in shed among UK Covid fines
(Dave Thompson/PA)

A man who drove 30 miles for a takeaway and a group gathering in a garden shed are among hundred of people who have been issued fines by British police enforcing coronavirus rules.

Forces across the UK have broken up parties and meet-ups and fined people for visiting beauty spots despite lockdown rules.

The Metropolitan Police said officers had issued more than 140 fixed penalty notices (FPNs) totalling £39,000 in two days in the Tower Hamlets and Hackney areas of London.

On January 15, officers were called to a property in Brick Lane, east London, and found more than 40 people having a party at an Airbnb.

Three officers were injured and three arrests were made for possession of a class B substance, breach of coronavirus legislation and assault on an emergency worker.

On January 16, officers attended a place of worship in Stamford Hill, Hackney, and found evidence of a large party being cleared away.

Officers later returned and found evidence of another large party, and the organiser was reported for consideration of a £10,000 (€11,240) FPN.

Surrey Police said they issued more than 100 FPNs of £200 (€225) to people between January 4 and 17.

Penalties issued in the last week include a man fined after driving more than 30 miles from his home in Chalfont St Giles, south-east Buckinghamshire.

Stopped in Walton, Surrey, he told police he had gone for a drive and to buy a takeaway, which the force believed to be fried chicken.

Surrey Police also issued a man with an FPN after he told officers he was travelling from Surbiton to Guildford on a train to buy cannabis.

A couple who had travelled from separate households to meet in a car late at night were found by officers in Grandstand Road car park, Epsom Downs, and issued with FPNs.

Chief Inspector Dan Gutierrez said: “We know the overwhelming majority of people in Surrey are doing the right thing by staying home, wearing masks and social distancing, but passing the hundred mark for FPNs issued this lockdown is not a matter for celebration.”

Between January 11 and 17, Wiltshire Police said officers had issued 104 formal warnings for failing to adhere to Government rules and recorded four Covid-related crimes and 35 incidents.

Of 21 FPNs issued in the same time, most were for people who had been gathering in groups outside.

On January 14, a man from Luton, Bedfordshire, was stopped in Devizes, central Wiltshire, and claimed he had travelled to get a McDonalds.

There is no McDonalds in Devizes and the man was issued with a £200 (€225) FPN.

Two motorists were reported by North Wales Police in Anglesey after driving more than 200 miles from Scotland to visit friends.

The drivers, who were stopped by police at Valley, near Holyhead, were found to be driving without insurance and breaching Covid travel restrictions.

(PA Graphics)

South Wales Police said 90 people had been fined for breaches of Alert Level 4 Covid restrictions over the weekend.

Officers issued fines to a man who had travelled nearly 30 miles across South Wales to take pictures for a photography competition in Cardiff, and a man who failed to self-isolate with his Covid-positive wife in Barry.

Fines were also handed to eight people who had congregated in a garden shed in Sketty, Swansea, and nine who had gathered for a gender reveal party at a house in Townhill, Swansea.

South Wales Police also issued a warning about anti-social behaviour to a group of up to 30 youths seen climbing the roofs of businesses and free-running in Holton Road, Barry.

On Saturday, Hampshire Police said officers attended an address in Basingstoke after several reports of a party, tweeting that the occupants claimed to be unaware of the pandemic because they did not watch the news.

Police in Bristol said they were called to a party in Frogmore Street on Friday night.

Two 19-year-old men were given FPNs as the party attendees were dispersed.

Chief Inspector Justin French, from Avon and Somerset Police, said: “It’s hard to believe those involved in this gathering would be so reckless and act without care or thought about the impact their actions will have on the community in which they live.”

The force also appealed for help identifying a man as part of an investigation after around 30 people gathered at Glastonbury Tor on January 10.

Officers were called at 12.40pm to reports of the breach at the large hill in Somerset. Most of the group dispersed as police attended.

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