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Fines for covid breaches totalling over £49,000 given out in Waltham Forest

A gathering was found at a venue in Lea Bridge Road (credit: Google Maps)

Fines totalling £49,400 were handed out across Waltham Forest in the same evening to those breaching Covid-19 regulations.

Waltham Forest Council and The Met Police have joined forces to target venues open in defiance of the Covid rules.

Across three separate cases on the evening of Friday, 29 January, 36 individuals were reported for fines of up to £800, with two people facing a possible £10,000 penalty.

In Walthamstow, a trio who were found inside a venue in Hoe Street, smoking shisha and drinking, were reported for £200 Fixed Penalty Notices.

At a grilled food premises in Leytonstone, twenty-two people received fines of up to £800 each, after the large group were caught drinking and smoking whilst waiting for food.

In a third separate incident, at least 35 people were found gathered at a venue in Leyton.

Multiple individuals attempted to hide in a stairwell as officers gained entry into the premises in Lea Bridge Road, with several people clambering to escape across a neighbouring extension. 

The company director and leaseholder of the venue, were each reported for £10,000 Fixed Penalty Notice’s.

Throughout the evening, £49,400 of potential FPNs were reported alongside one penalty notice for possession of cannabis.

Metropolitan Police’s, Superintendent Waheed Khan said: “There can be no doubt in anyone’s mind that we are in the throes of a deadly pandemic; and the fact some businesses continue to function in direct contradiction of the current restrictions quite frankly beggars belief.

“Police officers and special constables are working closely with councils and other groups to make sure that the rules – in place to save lives and protect the NHS – are being followed. Please do your bit to help these officers who are working hard to protect you.”

Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for the Environment, Cllr Clyde Loakes said: “By this point there can be no-one claiming to be unaware of the serious situation we are in and the responsibilities we all have to try and stop the spread of Covid-19.

“I am disappointed to say the least to see that council officers, police colleagues, and special constables are yet again having to risk their safety because a small minority of people simply do not give a damn about others.

“I know this is not an easy time for anyone. Business want to trade, children want to socialise, and families and friends want to meet and be together.

“However, we all want to keep our most vulnerable friends, family, and neighbours safe so they can celebrate with us. The vaccine is currently being rolled out and we can see light at the end of what has been a long, dark tunnel – it is simply irresponsible to jeopardise people’s safety at this point.”

For more on this story, and the latest on our other local and national news, listen to Time 107.5FM


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