Coronavirus in Scotland: Police called to break up hundreds of house parties every week

Police officers in Scotland have been called to break up more than 3,000 house parties across the country, despite a ban on households meeting indoors.

That’s according to new data obtained by BBC Scotland through a freedom of information request.

The BBC reported that between August 28 and October 14 police officers were called out to 3,052 illegal gatherings.

Sign up to our public interest bulletins - get the latest news on the Coronavirus

A third of the incidents happened after the ban on indoor visits, which had been in place in large parts of central Scotland, was extended nationwide on September 23.

Police in Scotland have been called to break up hundreds of house parties every week despite a ban on households meeting indoors.

There have been 83 arrests and more than 420 fines have been issued.

Deputy Chief Constable Malcolm Graham said: “Despite overwhelming levels of co-operation and support from communities across Scotland, a small minority of people continue to host or participate in house parties and gatherings.

“These are not confined to certain age groups and people should not be in any doubt that house gatherings allow coronavirus to spread. Where we encounter wilful, repeated, persistent or flagrant breaches we will, as the public would expect and support, act decisively to enforce the law.

“The Chief Constable has made it clear that we are asking people to take personal responsibility to do the right thing and remember the purpose of these measures is to aid the collective effort to stay safe, protect others and save lives by preventing the virus from spreading.

“Recent figures highlighted public confidence in Police Scotland has risen by around 20% because of the way our officers and staff have carried out their duties with common sense and courtesy during the pandemic.

“Assaults on police officers and staff carrying out their duties during this challenging time are disgraceful and will not be tolerated as we remain committed to improving and ensuring their safety.”

Under current restrictions people cannot meet those from another household in indoor settings across Scotland unless they are part of an “extended household”, available to people who live alone or only with children under 18.

People can meet outdoors in groups of up to six, not including children under 12, from no more than two households, and a maximum of six people from two households can meet in indoor hospitality settings such as pubs and cafes.

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by coronavirus impacts our advertisers.

If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.


Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.