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Nine people fined as police break up illegal house party – Liverpool Echo

https://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/nine-people-fined-police-called-19611099

Nine people were fined for attending a house party on Saturday night.

Police were called at 9.20pm on Saturday to an address in Wingate Road, Kirkby, following reports of a large gathering.

Nine people present in the house, who were from different households, were issued with fixed penalty notices.

Chief Inspector Phil Mullally, of Merseyside Police, said: “The country is currently in lockdown and the rules around what you are permitted to do have been made very clear by the government and there are no excuses for ignoring them.

“We have continued to remind people that they should not be leaving home apart from essential shopping, work and exercise and should not be meeting up with groups of people who are not part of their household or support bubble.

“We have all had to make sacrifices and not been able to meet up with our friends and extended family for significant birthdays, weddings, anniversaries and even funerals.

Wingate Road, Kirkby
(Image: Merseyside Police)

“Knowsley currently has very high number of cases of coronavirus.

“These people have shown utter contempt for everyone else by choosing to ignore the rules and have potentially put themselves and their loved ones at risk by meeting up.

“We are not here to be killjoys and ruin people wanting to have a good time – we all want to be able to do that.

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“But members of the public who are abiding by the rules are becoming increasingly frustrated when they see people choosing to flout the regulations and it’s important that we take action to deal with it.

“It’s also important that everyone realises that we all have a part to play in combatting the virus and ending the lockdown and it is essential that we all continue to abide by the rules to prevent the spread of coronavirus and protect vulnerable people and the NHS.”

Worrying figures show the biggest increases in Covid-19 cases are now in Merseyside and the West Midlands, according to the latest data.

Both regions have seen particularly sharp increases in cases, overtaking the speed of the spread of the virus in the South and East of England, which has seen hospitals overwhelmed with Covid patients.

Steve Rotheram, Mayor of Liverpool City Region, said: “These are sobering figures and it’s clear that the virus is spreading very rapidly across the country, and worryingly so for the north west and in particular the Liverpool City Region.

“I’d urge everyone to be extra careful and keep doing everything to keep yourself and loved ones safe to stop our NHS being overwhelmed.”

In Knowsley, the rate has soared from 455.4 cases per 100,000 in the seven days to December 30 to 1,263.4 per 100,000 in the seven days to January 6 – the biggest week-on-week rise for any local authority area in England.

Cllr Graham Morgan, leader of Knowsley Council, said, “The rate at which our figures are continuing to increase is a major concern.

“Clearly there are some in our community who are not taking this situation seriously.

“We have no option but to go back to basics and follow the rules as we all did in the lockdown in the first half of last year.”

Halton in Cheshire, also part of the Liverpool City Region, saw the second biggest jump, from 533.2 to 1,220.2.

And Liverpool itself recorded the third largest increase, from 387.5 to 958.6.

All six authorities in the Liverpool City Region are currently in the top 10 local areas with the biggest week-on-week jump in rates.

Matthew Ashton, director of public health at Liverpool City Council, said: “They are very concerning infection rates.

“Our rates have more than doubled in a week.

“Everybody needs to be strictly following the rules. Even if you can do something, it doesn’t mean you should.

“In fact we have got a variant of the virus that is 50 to 70 per cent more transmissible, therefore our Covid security measures need to be 50 to 70 per cent stronger, and that is strict adherence to the rules.”

Mr Ashton said pressure on hospitals will be “immense” and despite “pandemic fatigue” the new strain meant there could be no let-up.

He added: “We are going to see more deaths.

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“The next two months are going to be very difficult for everybody.

“This is literally about saving lives now.”

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