Greater Manchester Police officers were pelted with “missiles” after responding to a call around 10 p.m. local time to a residence in Gorton just outside the city, the department said in a statement Tuesday.
A police helicopter’s heat-seeking camera revealed large crowds of people attending the party in violation of the area’s coronavirus restrictions. Some were seen climbing over a fence to get in.
The Greater Manchester area is under strict lockdown orders that prohibit such large social gatherings after a local spike in coronavirus cases earlier this month, Sky News reported.
The tenant was given a fixed penalty notice and a court issued a three-month closure order that prohibits all access to the grounds by anyone except the property owners) and tenants, police said.
Inspector Jim Adams of GMP’s City of Manchester district thanked most citizens in the community for abiding by COVID-19 restrictions and called the incident “completely unacceptable and incomprehensible.”
“I understand that this is a frustrating time – many of us want to see our loved ones but we need to continue complying,” Adams said. “Enforcement is a last resort for GMP but today’s closure order is a warning that officers will take action if/when necessary.”
Councilor Nigel Murphy, deputy leader of the Manchester City Council, welcomed the “tough action” and said that “selfish breaches of the rules will not be tolerated.”
“This was a particularly flagrant breach of COVID-19 restrictions, which are in place to protect everyone in our communities and must be respected,” he said. “It is only if we all play our part by acting responsibly and doing our bit that we will start to see cases coming down, thus avoiding the risk of further restrictions being brought into force.”
The United Kingdom has seen 322,994 positive coronavirus cases and 41,483 deaths as of Wednesday, according to Johns Hopkins University.