Majority stick to rules as pubs and bars open to customers outdoors

Lincolnshire Police have thanked the public for largely sticking to the rules during the first weekend since the latest relaxation of lockdown.

Lincolnshire Police.

A force spokesman said: “The most recent stage of the Government’s roadmap out of Lockdown came into play last Monday, April 12.

“Last weekend was the first weekend since bars and pubs could open to customers sitting outdoors under the new rules and we are pleased to say that the majority of people enjoyed their time outside while following these.”

Chief Inspector Andy Morrice said: “We had a very busy weekend in terms of general calls for service – a 20% rise.

“This increase was to be expected as more people are out and about due to restrictions easing.

“We would like to thank the majority of people who have stuck to the rules and we would like to reinforce that lockdown has eased and not ended.

“The rules have been put in place to help people protect themselves and others and I would encourage people to continue to follow the guidance and ensure they meet in a group of no more than six outdoors.

“Gatherings indoors are not yet permitted.

“While we had no major issues in relation to Covid breaches over the weekend, we did have two main areas of concern.

“Over the weekend we attended several locations in Skegness following reports groups of more than six youths gathering and drinking alcohol.

“Our officers attended and we are looking into what offences have taken place. These groups will be dealt with in due course.”

Coastal Inspector Colin Haigh said: “These youngsters are the responsibility of their parents and parents should ensure they know where their children are.

“We attended numerous reports of youths drinking in groups larger than six and they will be dealt with.

“We will not tolerate this behaviour and we take these incidents very seriously and will take further action.

“Those breaking the rules are not only putting themselves at risk but others also.

“We will also be looking at any potential licensing breaches as to where the youths obtained their alcohol.”

Officers also attended a report of a gathering of around 40 people in The Meadows in Stamford.

A man was assaulted and received minor injuries, and one officer also suffered minor injury after an assault.

Two youths were arrested and released, and they will be required to attend a voluntary interview.

The group dispersed and they will be dealt with in due course.

Grantham Inspector Gary Stewart said: “This behaviour is totally unacceptable and will not be tolerated. We are looking into this further and those involved will be dealt with.

“A Dispersal Order will be in place across Stamford again on the weekend to ensure those who are out and acting responsibly can do so without having their day ruined by the minority.”

Lincolnshire Police are still in the process of collating the latest figures in relation to FPNs and these will be subject to review.

The rules, as of April 12, are:

• non-essential retail will be able to reopen

• personal care premises such as hairdressers and nail salons will be able to reopen

• public buildings such as libraries and community centres will be able to reopen

• outdoor hospitality venues will be able to reopen, with table service only

• most outdoor attractions including zoos, theme parks, and drive-in performances (such as cinemas and concerts) will be able to reopen

• some smaller outdoor events such as fetes, literary fairs, and fairgrounds will be able to take place

• indoor leisure and sports facilities will be able to reopen for individual exercise, or exercise with your household or support bubble

• all childcare and supervised activities will be allowed indoors (as well as outdoors) for all children.

• Parent and child groups can take place indoors (as well as outdoors) for up to 15 people (children under 5 will not be counted in this number)

• weddings, civil partnership ceremonies, wakes and other commemorative events will be able to take place for up to 15 people (anyone working is not included in this limit), including in indoor venues that are permitted to open or where an exemption applies.

• Wedding receptions can also take place for up to 15 people, but must take place outdoors, not including private gardens

• self-contained accommodation will be able to open for overnight stays in England with your household or support bubbles

• you should continue to minimise the amount that you travel where possible

• care home residents will be able to nominate two named individuals for regular indoor visits (following a rapid lateral flow test)

• The rule of six remains for outdoor socialising, which means that group of up to size people form any number of households can meet. Children of all ages count towards the limit of six. A group of any size which is made up of two households can also meet. Each household can include an existing support bubble.

• People must not meet indoors with anybody they don’t live with unless they are part of the same support bubble, or another legal exemption applies.