Brits have been spotted flouting the UK’s coronavirus lockdown on its first day in staggering scenes up and down the country.
“Idiotic” people have been pictured camping in groups on Snowdonia and having BBQs in Coventry in a baffling act of defiance hours into the nationwide shutdown.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson had just last night declared the draconian lockdown with immediate effect, ordering people to stay at home.
The move now means people are only allowed out of their homes to shop for necessities, exercise, for medical needs or to travel to and from work.
All public gatherings of more than two people are also banned, with all non-essential shops forced to shut along with gyms, libraries, churches, hotels and campsites.
But this morning Brits were already being pictured flouting the strict measures as an army of police were deployed across the UK to enforce the shutdown.
In one shocking incident a group of campers flocked to mountains in Snowdonia, Wales, sparking a large police response.
Officers were reportedly at the scene for over an hour, reports North Wales Live, before they ordered the walkers to leave.
The speedy crackdown by cops was applauded by people on social media, with one describing the campers as “idiots”.
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In another astonishing incident a group of 20 people held an outdoor BBQ in Coventry, West Midlands despite the cold weather in a clear snub to the lockdown.
Foleshill Police posted a picture of the bizarre scenes on Facebook, writing: “Unbelievably, we’ve just had to deal with 20+ people having a BBQ!!
“Please listen to government advice else this will get worse and will last longer!!”
Elsewhere police were seen speaking to large groups in Manchester city centre’s Piccadilly Gardens as they started enforcing the lockdown this morning.
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And in London cops were pictured shutting down shops and telling groups of people to disperse and go home.
Daily Star Online reported this afternoon how emergency laws are being pushed through parliament to give police the power to issue on-the-spot £30 fines to those caught flouting the lockdown.
Mr Johnson had announced the lockdown last night in a dramatic TV address to the nation amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
In a special broadcast on all main TV channels, the PM branded coronavirus “the biggest threat this country has faced for decades”.
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He said: “Without a huge national effort to halt the growth of this virus, there will come a moment when no health service in the world could possibly cope.
“Because there won’t be enough ventilators, enough intensive care beds, enough doctors and nurses.
“If you don’t follow the rules the police will have the powers to enforce them, including through fines and dispersing gatherings.
“We will look again in three weeks, and relax them if the evidence shows we are able to.
“But at present there are just no easy options. The way ahead is hard, and it is still true that many lives will sadly be lost.”
- Boris Johnson
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