New Year's Eve revellers flout Covid rules as cops break up illegal raves but cities are deserted as millions stay home
1st January 2021

NEW Year's Eve revellers flouted Covid rules to ring in 2021 – with cops forced to break up illegal raves as the clock struck midnight.

While millions stayed home to stop the spread of the deadly bug, some Brits ignored the rules and headed out to raucous parties to mark the end of 2020.

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In one New Year's Eve party in Chingford, Essex, women were seen in sparkly dresses while men passed around drinks and sparklers – with a flame thrower even seen spinning a baton on fire during the celebrations.

Other illegal raves sprang up across the country as revellers risked the chance of being hit with a £10,000 fine for flouting the Covid lockdown rules.

The selfish flouters headed to parties despite coronavirus still ripping across the country with more than 55,000 cases recorded in just one day yesterday.

Crowds gathered along London's Southbank as well as in Kensington, West London, Nottingham and Leeds despite the NHS being left overwhelmed by patients with one doctor warning those who didn't wear a mask had "blood on their hands".

Cops broke up a large party in Royal Docks, East London, as well with photographs showing bottles left strewn across a warehouse floor after the celebrations were broken up.

Newham Police warned: "Arrests made and considerations being given for a £10,000 fine for breaches of COVID19 legislation."

More than 60 people were also found at a party in Chadwell Heath, North East London, with the organiser hit with a £10,000 fine.

Another five people were reported after a party in Bromley while in Norfolk, cops seized a generator as they shut down the unlicenced music event.

In Brentwood, Essex Police also moved in to break up parties while a string of parties including a group of more than 30 revellers were dispersed in Birmingham, according to Sky.

West Midlands Police logged more than 300 gatherings reported in Birmingham before midnight.

Meanwhile two men were stabbed and a woman suffered head injuries on Edgware Road in London just after midnight.

Strict Covid rules meant there was none of the usual New Year's Eve celebrations.

London's annual fireworks celebrations were cancelled, but displays could still be seen in the night sky once the clock hit midnight.

Pubs and restaurants are shut across the nation as 20million people went into Tier 4, meaning no mixing is allowed outside of household or support bubbles.

Streets in Central London were left empty on Thursday night, with usually-bustling areas in the capital eerily quiet.

Central city areas – usually hubs of mass celebrations at this time of year – are deserted across the UK.

Publicans across the country have been forced to tip kegs full of beer down the drain, as almost all pubs in the UK will be closed for New Year's.

Cops had earlier warned the public they will be fining people breaking the rules by meeting up with others on New Year's Eve- starting with £100 and rising to £10,000 for people having parties.

Areas in London with the highest rates of Covid cases would be the focus of patrols.

Yet despite the strict rules, it was revealed a string of illegal New Year’s Eve raves had been secretly planned across Tier 4 London.

Thousands of people were expected to attend the events which could send Covid spreading even faster through the capital. 

Coronavirus cases continue to soar as a mutant strain of the bug sweeps across the UK.

On Thursday, Britain saw its highest ever daily rise in cases with 55,892 infections reported in the past 24 hours.

A further 964 deaths were recorded, bringing the total number of fatalities to 73,512.

The rise in cases means a total of 2,488,780 Brits have now been infected with the bug.

Thursday's rise in deaths is only slightly smaller than yesterday’s figure of 981 – the highest daily toll since April – amid fears that the high toll may not be a lag in reporting, as was thought yesterday.

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