Wedding hit with £1,000 fine after 100 attend gathering

PUBLISHED: 15:25 20 November 2020 | UPDATED: 15:25 20 November 2020

A wedding reception in England pre-lockdown could only have 15 people attending. Picture: Pixabay

A wedding reception in England pre-lockdown could only have 15 people attending. Picture: Pixabay

Archant

Two £1,000 fines have been issued to organisers of separate gatherings that recently breached coronavirus restrictions in Northaw and Hemel Hempstead.

On Saturday October 31, officers were called to a wedding reception in Northaw, near Potters Bar, which had an estimated 100 people in attendance – despite new laws stating that no more than 15 guests could attend.

And in the early hours of Sunday, November 1, officers were called to a music event in a location just off London Road in Hemel Hempstead, where an estimated 50 people were in attendance.

The police officers seized music equipment and dispersed the gathering.

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Again at the time, the law stated that gatherings outside of the home must not exceed more than six people.

On Tuesday, November 17, both the Northaw venue and the organiser of the music event were issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) for £1,000 respectively, in relation to the breaches which contravened the business restrictions and were dispersed with individual warnings at the time.

Chief superintendent Matt Nicholls, who is leading the police response to the virus in Herts, said: “Since these events took place, we have entered a second lockdown which is clear evidence that we need to continue to do all we can to prevent further spread of this deadly virus. The grave truth is, these restrictions are in place to save lives.

“There will be a time in the future when we can enjoy weddings, parties, concerts and gatherings unfettered by social distancing and a pandemic which I know has curtailed our way of life for many months now. But please, I urge you to play your part and respect the lockdown measures.

“We have been, and will continue to, conduct regular patrols to ensure that the Government regulations are being adhered to. Officers are visiting businesses, transport hubs, parks, schools and responding to COVID-related calls to addresses in the area.

“I want to make it crystal clear that Hertfordshire Constabulary will not tolerate serious cases of disregard to law and as both these examples clearly show, those intent on ignoring it will be dealt with and educated without hesitation.”


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