Kent Police issued 42 fines over the New Year to people who held parties, flouted travel bans or failed to self isolate when required.
Among them was a Ramsgate woman who was fined £1,000 on Sunday, 3 January. The woman was a passenger of a car involved in a collision and enquiries revealed that she should have been self-isolating.
On New Year’s Eve police were called at 1.45pm following reports that a group of about 15 people were seen on the beach near to Hodges Gap promenade in Margate. The group were dispersing when officers attended so fines were not issued.
Fines were also dished out in Canterbury, Medway and Chatham.
Assistant Chief Constable Claire Nix said: “The vast majority of Kent residents recognise the importance of abiding by the regulations to control the spread of Covid-19 and stayed at home with members of their household to see in the New Year.
“In other instances, we were able to disperse people and remind them of their personal responsibility to do the right thing and follow the law.
“However, on the occasions where people showed a blatant disregard for the regulations, putting others in danger by hosting gatherings or meeting others whilst infected with the virus, officers were left with no other option but to issue fines.
“As we enter the third national lockdown we will continue to police in the way we have since March – engaging with people, reminding them of their responsibilities and taking further action when necessary.
“The restrictions are designed to reduce the infection rate – but they will only work if people comply. I would urge everyone to familiarise themselves with the latest guidance to ensure we all collectively help reduce infections.
“Preventing the spread of the virus is a shared effort, and police will play their part alongside the Government, businesses, hospitality owners, local authorities and the public.”
People should stay at home and only leave to shop for essentials, exercise, work, seek medical assistance or escape domestic abuse. The measures, which will stay in place until at least mid-February, includes the closure of schools and colleges to all but vulnerable and key worker children, whilst early year settings can remain open.