Don't treat yourself to a fine this Halloween
Main article content
Leicestershire Police is advising communities not to ruin any Halloween celebrations by being issued with a potentially hefty fine if found breaching Covid-19 Health Protection Regulations.
While the force continues its work to engage, explain and encourage in relation to the guidelines, enforcement action will be taken when guidelines are not being followed and advice is not being taken.
Since government restrictions came into being in March the force has issued around 515 fixed penalty notices (FPNs). Of those incidents eight people attracted the higher amount of £10,000 for the offence of organising or facilitating an organised gathering under the Health Protection Regulations.
Those eight breaches took place as follows:
- 25 September – at the Gate Hangs Well Public House in Syston, Leicester, the Licensee was fined after a group of around 300 people attended an event at the premises
- 27 September – a man and a woman were fined for holding a house party involving more than 30 people at an address in Colton St in the city. Advice and guidance had previously been issued at the property in relation to breaching regulations
- 28 September – Church St, Leicester, a fine was issued to the organiser of a house party where more than 30 people were found to be in attendance
- 11 October – at an address in Atkins St, Leicester a fine was issued to the organiser of a house party involving more than 30 people
- 13 October – the owner of a premises in Ashby Square in Loughborough was fined along with the event organiser after 150 people attended an event at the location
- 13 October – the owner of a premises in Granby St, Leicester was fined following a music event (officers linked this incident to the event in Ashby Square, Loughborough)
The value of the fine is dependent on a number of factors including when the fine is paid and the number of offences committed - but can be up to £10,000.
On 16 October the government introduced a new three tier system.
Currently the city of Leicester, Oadby and Wigston are placed in Tier 2 (high). Restrictions in Tier 2 include the ‘rule of six’ – apart from a set of limited exemptions including work and education, any social gatherings of more than six people is against the law. As well as this businesses selling food and drink are currently under order to close at 10pm. This includes pubs as well as takeaway businesses. Deliveries can continue after 10pm. Additional restrictions apply to tackle a rise in positive cases in a local area, indoor gatherings are banned and people should only use public transport for essential reasons.
Charnwood will also be placed in Tier 2 from 12.01am on Saturday (31 October).
The rest of Leicestershire and Rutland are currently placed in Tier 1 (medium). Restrictions in Tier 1 include the same regulations as in Tier 2 without the additional restrictions.
The regulations also give police the power to arrest when someone refuses to provide their name and address when being issued with a FPN.
Superintendent Adam Slonecki said: “While it must be recognised that the vast majority of people are adhering to the latest government guidelines we are still receiving reports of potential breaches of the regulations.
“Our approach remains the same and we continue to engage with the public, explain the need to follow the regulations and encourage people to do so however, we will take enforcement action where and when it is required.
“We are living through unprecedented times and as a community across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland we must continue working together in order to tackle the spread of Coronavirus.
For more information on the current guidelines, visit www.gov.uk