The Metropolitan Police released bodycam footage from the weekend where they broke up parties and other events in the capital after it had been placed under the Tier 4 coronavirus restrictions. One clip showed a number of young people leaving what appears to be a warehouse party, while another shows a group gathered outside a house party. An officer told a party organiser in one clip: “Because of the size of the party and lack of engagement from people here, you are probably going to end up with up to a £10,000 fine.”
In another clip, an officer told a business owner: “I have never been to takeaway food where they’ve sat me down and handed me a pint.”
Commander Alex Murray, the Met Police’s lead for Covid, said: “Over the weekend just been, as we have been for most of the year, Met officers were out and about responding to flagrant breaches and issuing fines to those who thought they could organise warehouse parties and put many of us at risk of the virus.
“Most Londoners want to see the enforcement we are taking against those who think the Tier 4 rules don’t apply to them – I hope that this shows just a glimpse of the work we were doing.”
He added: “Anyone who thinks the rules are there to be broken, ignored, or do not apply to them is very mistaken.
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“The rules are that you should stay at home.
“It is for your safety, the safety of your family and friends, and the safety of your communities.”
It comes as health chiefs have urged anyone who travelled to regions from Tier 4 areas or Wales to self-isolate, turn away Christmas Day visitors and “assume” they have the new COVID-19 variant.
On Monday afternoon, public health directors in the West Midlands and Greater Manchester asked people to self-isolate for 10 days if they had travelled from London and areas of the South East, which entered Tier 4 at the weekend, or Wales, where tough new measures came into force on Sunday.
In Liverpool City Region, where a mass coronavirus testing pilot has been taking place, anyone who had travelled from London or the South East to the area was urged to get a coronavirus test.
Director of public health for the Lancashire authority of Blackburn with Darwen Dominic Harrison told BBC Lancashire anyone who had travelled from a Tier 4 area since last Wednesday should self-isolate for at least five days.
The advice came after scenes of people packing railway stations in London hours before Tier 4 controls came into force at midnight on Sunday, prompting fears the more infectious new variant could be spread across the country by the travellers.
Director of public health for Tameside, Greater Manchester, Dr Jeanelle de Gruchy said: “The new strain of Covid, which is increasingly rapidly in Tier 4 areas, is extremely worrying.
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“It is incredibly infectious and if you come in to contact with someone with this strain you are far more likely to catch it than the original strain.
“We are so concerned about the potential grave impact of this that we have taken the difficult decision to ask anyone who has travelled here for Christmas from any Tier 4 area or Wales to act as if they have this new variant, even if they have no symptoms, and self-isolate for at least 10 days.
“Other people in the house do not need to self isolate but no visitors should be allowed in that house at all, even on Christmas Day.”
A statement issued on behalf of all the West Midlands health chiefs also urged people to “self-isolate for at least 10 days”.