New regulations come into force today allowing Police to enforce the local lockdown in Leicester.
The government has had to rush through the legal change to enforce the local lockdown. Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “Some of the measures that we’ve unfortunately had to take in Leicester will require a legal underpinning.”
The new legislation includes a ban on social gatherings of over six people, overnight stays, and the reopening of hotels, pubs and restaurants.
This means people or business that flout the new law could receive fines, starting at £100 and going up to £3,200 for repeat offenders.
Leicester has seen a surge in coronavirus infections over the last two weeks with 944 cases reported – leading it to become the first city placed under a local lockdown.
Restrictions due to be lifted today are being extended in the city for another two weeks, while non-essential shops and schools have closed.
The new lockdown restrictions will be enforced by the Police, who are bracing themselves for a busy weekend. More officers will be on duty this weekend than during a typical New Year’s Eve.
Police are taking a dual approach to their operation, with special constables supporting the policing of lockdown measures in the greater Leicester area. Running in parallel to this, officers will be policing the easing of restrictions outside of the restricted area where pubs and restaurants are allowed to reopen from today (4 July).
Leicestershire Police said: “We will be directing people to follow the regulations and encouraging to them to follow the guidelines.”
“We want people to stay at home in the protected area and if you are outside of this to be responsible and socialise safely.”