Sheffield police urged to ‘act immediately’ as groups keep breaking lockdown rules in Fir Vale

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Police in Sheffield have now issued more than 200 fines to people caught flouting the coronavirus lockdown rules.

South Yorkshire Police revealed that 202 fixed penalty notices (FPNs) had been issued across the city since April 2 in response to a ‘small minority’ of people it says are continuing to breach the restrictions.

The figure emerged as it responded to a new photo, shared by former councillor Ibrar Hussain, showing people ignoring the social distancing measures brought in to combat COVID-19 by gathering round a car.

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“Wheldrake Road, Fir Vale area need more police patrolling to move people on as it’s unfair on them with such numbers of people gathering. (It’s) not on. Please act immediately,” said Mr Hussain.

People gathering on Wheldrake Road in Fir Vale, Sheffield (pic: Ibrar Hussain)People gathering on Wheldrake Road in Fir Vale, Sheffield (pic: Ibrar Hussain)
People gathering on Wheldrake Road in Fir Vale, Sheffield (pic: Ibrar Hussain) | Other 3rd Party

It is not the first time Mr Hussain has highlighted the issue, and new figures from the Office for National Statistics last week showed there had been more than twice as many COVID-19 deaths in Crabtree and Fir Vale as in any other Sheffield neighbourhood.

Responding to the photo, Superintendent Delphine Waring, of South Yorkshire Police, insisted officers were ‘working hard’ to address the problem, with patrols being stepped up, people moved on where necessary and the introduction of digital screens and leaflet drops.

“Whilst there have been some challenges, the majority of residents are complying with the restrictions and have been taking their responsibility to protect others seriously,” she said.

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“There is, however, a small number who continue to flout restrictions. In these instances, we have moved to enforcement to encourage compliance.

“Across Sheffield we have issued a total of 202 FPNs since April 2. A number of these have been issued in the Page Hall and Burngreave areas, and have been given as a response to a small minority of people who have continued to breach restrictions despite the best efforts of our officers.

“These are working as a deterrent and we are seeing increased compliance in the areas that they have been issued.”

Anyone caught flouting the lockdown rules can be fined £60 for a first offence.

You can report suspected COVID-19 breaches via South Yorkshire Police’s dedicated reporting form or by calling 101 if you do not have access to the internet.