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West Bridgford
Thursday, 4 March 2021

£10,000 fine for organiser of Nottingham car park ‘worship’ event with food, music and tents

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Officers have issued a £10,000 fine to the organiser of an event which has gone ahead despite previous warnings.

Around 30 people had attended a car park in Bardney Drive, Bulwell for the event, and when officers arrived on scene at around 12.15pm today (Saturday 20 February 2021), tents had been set up, a sound system was in place to play music and food was being served.

Officers have been advising a religious group involved for a number of weeks around the where and how they can worship during the current lockdown.

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They have been engaging, explaining and encouraging those attending to follow the current lockdown restrictions that the whole of England and Wales must abide by.

Inspector James Walker, of Nottinghamshire Police, said: “Over the past few weeks we have been advising this group, having been made aware of events they have held in Bulwell.

“Initially, we have been engaging, explaining and encouraging as to the importance of following the current national lockdown restrictions, which is to protect the NHS, save lives and keep people safe. This has been our immediate approach throughout the Coronavirus pandemic and will continue to be.

“Over the last week in particular, we have absolutely clarified that these events are not allowed, and we have since made it explicity clear that whilst we wholeheartedly support the number of religious groups that can be found in our communities, there are certain restrictions that must be adhered to in order to keep people safe.

“Whilst the rules state you can attend places of worship, this car park is evidently not a place of worship and, despite the warnings given over the last week in particular, this event continued to go ahead and that is why today we have implemented our last resort of enforcement.

“We do recognise that the majority of the local public are adhering to the current restrictions that are in place and we thank those people that are doing so for their patience during what is a difficult time for everyone.