Rule of Six won't save you from £200 Covid fine if you're inside an Audi parked up in Northamptonshire countryside

Police still calls every half-hour reporting breaches more than 12 months since restrictions were first introduced

Wednesday, 31st March 2021, 2:45 pm

Some of the lockdown rules might have been relaxed but not all — as one car-load found out after a late-night trip in the Northamptonshire countryside.

Four occupants of a red Audi each copped £200 fines for breaching Covid-19 restrictions after being spotted parked off the beaten track near Naseby late on Saturday night.

PC Hutch Hutchings, from Northamptonshire Police rural crime team tweeted: "Parking your car within the trees won’t stop us finding you.

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Police came across this car-load parked up in the countryside near Naseby on Saturday night. Photo: @hutch472

"We’re nearly there now folks. Please abide by the restrictions put in place regarding Covid-19."

Even worse news for the cosy quartet ... another 48 hours would not have been enough to get them off a ticket.

Boris Johnson's roadmap out of lockdown meant up non-essential journeys are not banned and up to six people or two different households can now meet up outside for the first time since January 5.

But the Rule of Six only applies outdoors — not inside an Audi — with strict guidance on social distancing.

Northamptonshire Police control room fielded more than 1,200 calls reporting possible breaches of Covid-19 rules between March 1 and March 26

Reports of Covid-19 breaches are still keeping Northamptonshire Police busy more than 12 months on from restrictions first being introduced.

The Force Control Room fielded 1,256 coronavirus-related calls between March 1 and March 26 — an average of one every 31 minutes — compared to 1,190 about road incidents, 989 anti-social behaviour and 532 violence against persons.

And they are handing out on average of 22 Fixed Penalty Notices a day to those found to be not sticking to the rules.

Superintendent Elliot Foskett, silver commander for the Force’s response to Covid-19, said: "Now it is possible for people to meet outdoors in groups of up to six, or for two households to meet, we really need everyone to stick to these limits, which exist to help save lives.

“The risk of coronavirus has not disappeared, it remains and is as serious as it ever was.

We all need to continue to play our part so that further lifting of restrictions can go ahead at the earliest dates as set out by the Government.

“Bending or breaking the rules now is likely to mean delays to that process, which no-one wants to see."