Wednesday, 25 Nov 2020

Hundreds gather for ‘lockdown rave’ as Snapchat pics show police moving in

A rave on open land in Greater Manchester was broken up by police just hours after Boris Johnson announced a second national lockdown.

The large dance party on land in the village of Astley, near Wigan, was captured on Snapchat.

Greater Manchester is under a Tier 3 lockdown which bans gatherings of more than six people at a time.

The video, shared on the social media platform and titled "lockdown rave", shows long lines of police vehicles reports Manchester Evening News.

Police helicopters were reportedly circling the area and roads were closed as cops contained the scene.

Pictures show revellers leaving the scene after officers from Greater Manchester and Cheshire police forces arrive, while others show partygoers enjoying the thumping music.

There were up to 15 riot police vans in attendance from both forces as officers moved in to shut the rave down.

Organisers of events such as this can be fined up to £10,000 if police pursue them. The land used for the rave is near to Glazebury, Warrington, over the border in Cheshire.

Daily Star Online has asked Greater Manchester Police to comment on the operation to break up the rave.

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It came just hours after Prime Minister Boris Johnson, flanked by chief medical officer Chris Whitty and chief scientific adviser Sir Patrick Vallance, outlined a second national lockdown.

From Thursday, all non-essential businesses must close for four weeks in the latest bid to curb growing Covid numbers.

Restaurants, bars and pubs must all shut, and people must stay at home apart from for essential outings.

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Indoor and outdoor leisure facilities like bowling alleys, leisure centres and gyms will be shut – and people will only be allowed to exercise outdoors.

Fears remain if action is not taken the NHS will be over capacity by the end of November or beginning of December.

Mr Whitty told the news conference the projections on the spread of the virus had outstripped even their own worst-case scenario if it was left unchecked.

The lockdown will last for four weeks, said the PM, with regions going back into the tiered system of restrictions after December 2.

Johnson said he was trying to prevent a "medical and moral disaster" despite stating two weeks ago regional lockdowns were the way forward.

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