Police forces across the country are warning that anyone found breaking coronavirus restrictions on Christmas Day could be hit with a fine.
Police chiefs have said patrols will be looking for anyone breaching guidance – and dishing out penalties.
In North Wales, which is currently under tier 4 restrictions – meaning people must stay at home on 25 December – there will be road patrol with officers stopping vehicles and asking reasons for travel.
Temporary assistant chief constable Nigel Harrison, of North Wales Police, said: “Throughout the festive period we will be undertaking high visibility patrols and will also be making checks on the reasons people are travelling.”
Top brass in Durham, Surrey, Cheshire, Derbyshire and Kent were all among those who also told people the season of goodwill would not be extended to those bending the laws over the holiday period.
In South Yorkshire, Superintendent Paul McCurry said: “We will be taking a common sense and pragmatic approach to policing Covid restrictions over Christmas, including on Christmas Day.”
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But striking a less emollient tone, he added: “We must all be wary of the dangers of the rapid spread of this new variant of Covid-19.
“As throughout the pandemic, we are confident that the majority of people will continue to do their best to adapt and do the right thing [but] those who blatantly ignore the regulations should expect to receive a visit from the police and they may receive a fixed penalty notice.”
The National Police Chiefs’ Council, which coordinates law enforcement across the country, confirmed officers would dole out fines where there was a blatant disregard for the law.
Chairman Martin Hewitt said: “These restrictions will be upsetting for many after a very challenging year, but most people will want to do what they can to protect public health and the health of their loved ones.
“We urge everyone to follow the rules in their area, and as throughout the pandemic, we are confident that the majority of people will continue to do their best to adapt and do the right thing.
“Clear guidance will be developed with the College of Policing for officers who are policing these regulations, and they will continue to play their part in helping the public navigate and understand changes in their area.”
It is not the first time police have appeared especially zealous at enforcing coronavirus restrictions.
Derbyshire Police in particular were criticised during the first lockdown in March after releasing drone footage of people walking their dogs in the Peak District with the caption that travelling for exercise was not considered “essential”.