£10,000 fines on way for organisers of illegal raves
Officers have responded to a surge in unlicensed music events in recent weeks amid warm weather and an easing of lockdown restrictions.
Tougher measures targeting those breaching coronavirus regulations on large gatherings will come into effect on Friday, ahead of the August bank holiday weekend.
Boris Johnson said that new fines were to be introduced for those hosting raves when he announced a further easing of England’s lockdown last week.
People facilitating or organising illegal raves, unlicensed music events or any other unlawful gathering of 30 people or more may face a £10,000 fine.
Participants can continue to be issued with fines of £100, while those who have already been fined will see the amount double on each offence, up to a maximum of £3,200.
The moves come on another busy weekend for police in regard to unlawful gatherings.
Birmingham Police said they attended more than 70 unlicensed street and house parties on Saturday night, while police in Huddersfield broke up an illegal rave involving some 300 people.
The Metropolitan Police received information on more than 200 events across London in a single weekend, responding to more than 1,000 illegal events in the capital since the end of June.
Elsewhere, West Midlands Police shut down 125 parties and raves – including one of up to 600 people – in one weekend.
Home Secretary Priti Patel said: “These gatherings are dangerous and those who organise them show a blatant disregard for the safety of others.
“I am pleased the police have already stepped up their response and I am giving them the tools they need to continue to keep us safe.