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The night owls have visited the city for one final night of freedom before the new "rule of six" is introduced on Monday


Night owls across the country met the city for one last night of freedom before the strict new "six rule" comes into force on Monday.

Large groups of drinkers gathered tonight in bars and restaurants in London, Nottingham, Manchester, Portsmouth and Leeds to take advantage of their final hours of freedom before the government tightened lockdown restrictions next week.

Hundreds of drinkers were seen singing and dancing along in London's West End while a street musician played a tune, with very few night owls paying attention to government social distancing measures.

Under Boris Johnson's harsh new measures, groups of more than six people can be broken up by the police who will be able to hand out £ 100 fines to those who break the rules.

This will double up to £ 3,200 for each repeat offense, and only schools, workplaces and a limited number of other locations are exempt.

The move taken to combat the increasing spread of coronavirus came in yesterday in a government study that suggested the reproduction rate in England could be as high as 1.7.

Tim Robson, the Northeast's representative on the national Pubwatch program, expected police officers to closely monitor bars over the weekend to make sure they were working safely.

LONDON: General view of people having a night out in Soho in London's West End. People have been warned not to have a "party weekend" as a former chief scientific advisor said Britain was "on the verge of losing control of coronavirus"

LONDON: People having a night out in Leicester Square in London's West End

LONDON: People having a night out in Leicester Square in London's West End

NOTTINGHAM: Night owls flock to downtown bars for an evening before coronavirus rules change on Monday

NOTTINGHAM: Night owls flock to downtown bars for an evening before coronavirus rules change on Monday

MANCHESTER: Drinkers flock to bars and restaurants in Manchester for an evening before lockdown restrictions tighten on Monday

MANCHESTER: Drinkers flock to bars and restaurants in Manchester for an evening before lockdown restrictions tighten on Monday

PORTSMOUTH: Hundreds of people enjoy a Saturday night on the town in the pubs and bars of Guildhall Walk in Portsmouth, Hampshire

PORTSMOUTH: Hundreds of people enjoy a Saturday night on the town in the pubs and bars of Guildhall Walk in Portsmouth, Hampshire

LEEDS: Revelers hit the bars in Leeds tonight before a more stringent new “rule of six” goes into effect on Monday

LEEDS: Revelers hit the bars in Leeds tonight before a more stringent new “six rule” comes into effect on Monday

He said, "There is an expectation that everyone will have one major final seizure, but people are starting to get anxious and a lot of licensed premises have already been trapped by the police."

Mr. Robson, a former police officer, said it was up to licensees to manage their premises and prevent large groups from gathering unsafely.

He added, "There may be an increase in groups going out this weekend, but it will likely be in premises that don't have door surveillance and control."

Meanwhile, Newcastle upon Tyne's Public Health Director Eugene Milne has said he didn't think large numbers of people would be kidding in front of the tighter controls.

He told Tyne Tees TV News, "When the lockdown opened, there was a real fear that this might happen in the city and it didn't, so I think we can trust the people.

“The idea of ​​the rule of six is ​​to make it easier for people to know how to follow the instructions, and I think one of the big problems has been that the instructions have gradually become so complicated and specific to certain areas that it becomes very confusing for everyone. & # 39;

Night owls enjoy the night before the new Covid restrictions in Greater Manchester, as the "six-point rule" comes into force on Monday

Night owls enjoy the night before the new Covid restrictions in Greater Manchester, as the "six-point rule" comes into force on Monday

The revelers were found not to have been socially distant as police were heavily present across Manchester as the partiers let go ahead of the new restrictions put in place on Monday

The revelers were found not to have been socially distant as police were heavily present across Manchester as the partiers let go ahead of the new restrictions put in place on Monday

Hundreds of people enjoyed a Saturday night on the town in the pubs and bars of Guildhall Walk in Portsmouth, Hampshire. Many were in groups of more than six people, which will be banned from Monday

Hundreds of people enjoyed a Saturday night on the town in the pubs and bars of Guildhall Walk in Portsmouth, Hampshire. Many were in groups of more than six people, which will be banned from Monday

A group of people enjoy an evening on the Guildhall Walk in Portsmouth, Hampshire on Saturday before the new restrictions are put in place on Monday

A group of people enjoy an evening on the Guildhall Walk in Portsmouth, Hampshire on Saturday before the new restrictions are put in place on Monday

Tonight, drinkers crowd outside the crowded Paramount Wetherspoons in Manchester before new lockdown restrictions are put in place on Monday

Tonight, drinkers crowd outside the crowded Paramount Wetherspoons in Manchester before new lockdown restrictions are put in place on Monday

Revelers took to the streets in Leeds for one final night of freedom tonight before stricter new coronavirus lockdown measures go into effect starting Monday

Revelers took to the streets in Leeds for one final night of freedom tonight before stricter new coronavirus lockdown measures go into effect starting Monday

Hundreds of people enjoy a Saturday night on the town in the pubs and bars of Guildhall Walk in Portsmouth, Hampshire

Hundreds of people enjoy a Saturday night on the town in the pubs and bars of Guildhall Walk in Portsmouth, Hampshire

General view of people spending the night in Soho in London's West End tonight before new lockdown measures are put in place on Monday

General view of people spending the night in Soho in London's West End tonight before new lockdown measures are put in place on Monday

People sing and dance as they watch a street performer in Leicester Square in London's West End

People sing and dance as they watch a street performer in Leicester Square in London's West End

The police are heavily represented in Greater Manchester this weekend as the night owls have been classified as not socially distant

The police are heavily represented in Greater Manchester this weekend as the night owls have been classified as not socially distant

Night owls in Greater Manchester were found to have lack of social distance as police were heavily represented across the city

Night owls in Greater Manchester were found to have lack of social distance as police were heavily represented across the city

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the surge in infections justified the government's new "rule of six" and warned people "the pandemic is not over".

Cabinet minister Michael Gove called on people today to act in accordance with the rules this weekend before the "six rules" go into effect or the risk of increasing the rate of spread of the coronavirus.

He told BBC Breakfast, “When people behave in a way that is not really in line with or in line with the guidelines, they are putting other people at risk.

"The reason the country's police chiefs have said they hope people will act with reasonable restraint this weekend is because we don't want to see the virus spread accelerate further."

The public is spending one night tonight in central London, UK. The UK government will be introducing new restrictions from Monday banning gatherings of six people

The public is spending one night tonight in central London, UK. The UK government will be introducing new restrictions from Monday banning gatherings of six people

The public is spending one night tonight in central London, UK. The UK government will be introducing new restrictions from Monday banning gatherings of six people

The public is spending one night tonight in central London, UK. The UK government will be introducing new restrictions from Monday banning gatherings of six people

The public is spending one night tonight in central London, UK. The UK government will be introducing new restrictions from Monday banning gatherings of six people

The public is spending one night tonight in central London, UK. The UK government will be introducing new restrictions from Monday banning gatherings of six people

He denied the government would lose control of Covid-19. & # 39; No. I don't accept that, ”he said.

Mr Gove also denied claims that Chancellor Rishi Sunak's hugely popular Eat Out To Help Out program helped spread the coronavirus and that fines may be required to enforce rules on self-isolation.

Speaking to the BBC's Radio 4 Today, he said, "We are not saying that people shouldn't watch their friends, but there has to be a degree of self-discipline and limitation to face the challenges we face."

The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster also responded to criticism of the government's crackdown on Covid, saying that people can only have freedom if they are exercised "responsibly".

Nottingham revelers flock to the bars in the city center for an evening before the coronavirus rules change on Monday. Crowds poured into bars and pubs in the city. Long lines were seen outside a number of bars with minimal social distance

Nottingham revelers flock to the bars in the city center for an evening before the coronavirus rules change on Monday. Crowds poured into bars and pubs in the city. Long lines were seen outside a number of bars with minimal social distance

Nottingham revelers flock to the bars in the city center for an evening before the coronavirus rules change on Monday.

Nottingham revelers flock to the bars in the city center for an evening before the coronavirus rules change on Monday.

A general overview of people who spend an evening in Soho, London's West End, shortly after being warned by scientific advisors not to have a “party weekend”

A general overview of people who spend an evening in Soho, London's West End, shortly after being warned by academic advisors not to have a “party weekend”

The night owls hit the city in Leeds last weekend before the government's new “six rule” came into force

The night owls hit the city in Leeds last weekend before the government's new “six rule” came into force

"I don't want fines to be imposed, but more than that, I don't want people to behave in ways that put the most vulnerable at risk," Gove told the Today program this morning. “Well, there are restrictions and I love freedom, but the one thing I think is more important is that you exercise freedom responsibly.

"When you exercise freedom, you should do it in a way that will not harm others."

With hundreds of Britons enjoying a final weekend of freedom, police chiefs urged people to watch out for each other and avoid a "party weekend" before the restrictions are implemented.

General view of people having a night out in Soho in London's West End. People have been warned of a "party weekend" as a former chief scientific adviser said the UK was "on the verge of losing control of the coronavirus". The public has been urged to act "in accordance" with Covid-19 guidelines before the "Rule of Six" restrictions go into effect on Monday

General view of people having a night out in Soho in London's West End. People have been warned not to have a "party weekend" as a former chief scientific adviser said the UK was "on the verge of losing control of the coronavirus". The public has been urged to act in accordance with Covid-19 guidelines before the "Rule of Six" restriction goes into effect on Monday

Hundreds of people enjoyed a Saturday night on the town in the pubs and bars of Guildhall Walk in Portsmouth, Hampshire

Hundreds of people enjoyed a Saturday night on the town in the pubs and bars of Guildhall Walk in Portsmouth, Hampshire

Hundreds of people enjoyed a Saturday night on the town in the pubs and bars of Guildhall Walk in Portsmouth, Hampshire. Many were in groups of more than six people, which will be banned from Monday

Hundreds of people enjoyed a Saturday night on the town in the pubs and bars of Guildhall Walk in Portsmouth, Hampshire. Many were in groups of more than six people, which will be banned from Monday

John Apter, National Police Federation Chairman of England and Wales, said: “There is a real risk that some members of the public will take advantage of the current situation and treat this weekend as a party weekend before tighter restrictions are put in place Monday.

“Alcohol and warm weather are not a good combination at best. Using the current situation as an opportunity and excuse to have a party would be incredibly irresponsible and put pressure not only on the police but possibly also on ambulance and the NHS.

“We are hit by a deadly pandemic and have seen more and more cases in recent weeks. The police are under pressure like never before, but my colleagues will issue writ of execution when they deem it appropriate and we do not apologize. & # 39;

People dance to a street musician in Leicester Square in London, England tonight. Starting Monday September 14th, groups of more than six people will be banned from meeting due to new coronavirus restrictions

People dance to a street musician in Leicester Square in London, England tonight. Starting Monday September 14th, groups of more than six people will be banned from meeting due to new coronavirus restrictions

Revelers enjoy a night of freedom in Soho tonight before the government's new rule of six goes into effect on Monday

A couple in masks can be seen in front of the crowds on September 12, 2020 in London, England. Starting Monday September 14th, groups of more than six people will be banned from meeting due to new coronavirus restrictions

A couple in masks can be seen in front of the crowds on September 12, 2020 in London, England. Starting Monday September 14th, groups of more than six people will be banned from meeting due to new coronavirus restrictions

Elsewhere, budding night owls have been encouraged to stay home as Birmingham became the newest city to be affected by localized lockdown rules after the number of coronavirus patients admitted to hospitals doubled in a week.

As of Tuesday, more than 1.5 million people in Birmingham and neighboring Solihull and Sandwell will be banned from mingling with anyone outside their own household in private homes, pubs, restaurants or gardens.

Yesterday, police officers told the Telegraph they fear the UK will resemble "Rome's last days" after this weekend amid a storm of decadent pre-lockdown parties planned.

An official from the north east of England said: “We are concerned that this weekend will be like the last days of Rome.

Revelers enjoy a night of freedom in Soho tonight before the government's new rule of six goes into effect on Monday

Revelers enjoy a night of freedom in Soho tonight before the government's new rule of six goes into effect on Monday

"If people think they can't go out and have fun for the next few months, they'll go crazy and we'll pick the pieces up."

The British have promised to get upset and kneel with friends one last time before Mr Johnson's strict new coronavirus restrictions come into effect.

Many have to cancel parties after warning of a rapid surge in infections among people between the ages of 20 and 30 – but fears have grown that some will use the weekend as an opportunity to go wild despite the ongoing pandemic.

A senior official said they were not sure police had the resources to face the challenge of the thousands of people ignoring the restrictions this weekend.

Brian Booth, chairman of the West Yorkshire Police Federation, added that officers are "back to the mundane things like dealing with stab wounds, shootings, drug dealers, missing people, etc."

"If we are asked to focus on enforcement, there has to be something else," he said.