5,000 illegal NYE parties to charge £10 entry to cover fines if raided by police

Covid rule breakers are being charged £10 per head by illegal New Years Eve parties to cover costs of police fines.

The Night Time Industries Association estimates more than 5,000 illegal parties will be held across the UK on Friday night, with pubs and clubs completely closed in Tiers 3 and 4.

Police up and down the country have a mammoth task in shutting down raves and gatherings as revellers are determined to see the back of 2020 together, according to Michael Kill, CEO of NTIA.

Mr Kill told the Daily Star: "We have raised concerns over many weeks and months that the restriction of the Night Time Economy will lead to the escalation of illegal parties taking place on New Years Eve and across the weekend.

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"Following discussions with many of the legitimate events promoters, industry leaders and general public across the country, as well as concerns levied both by regional police and local authorities on the impact of restrictions on New Year's Eve celebrations, we have estimated that we will see over 5,000 illegal parties across the UK."

The lengthy closure of night clubs and ban on home parties since the UK first plunged into lockdown in spring has left some people desperate for a big night out.

But party hosts whether in a public place or a residential home, face a hefty £10,000 fine if busted by the police.

Mr Kill continued: "Many want to see the New Year out and have been socially starved for over eight/nine months.

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"It has also been muted that many of these organisers will target warehouses from lost businesses during the pandemic, and are willing to take these risks and forgive the £10,000 fine within the admission charge to cover their bets.

"There will also be many people who will push the boundaries of household mixing with parties taking place in households across the country, particularly in remote locations."

Cracking down on illegal parties is nothing new for the authorities but the current measures in place to combat the spread of coronavirus are expected to make New Years Eve the most challenging night yet for police.

News of events will be passed on between mates and over social media, Mr Kill added.

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He said: "Illegal parties have been taking place for many years now and have been a cat and mouse game between the authorities and the organisers, with the pandemic restricting social activity further, there will naturally be an uplift in these types of events, with varying audience sizes.

"With privacy settings and complex platforms which hinder access, many of these parties are promoted digitally, or through word of mouth via trusted circles, this will be a huge challenge for Police forces up and down the country.

"We would urge people to consider the consequences of their actions, given the delicate situation around infection rates over the last few weeks.

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