London

Soho chaos as thousands swarm the streets after pubs rammed

SOHO was jam-packed with thousands of drinkers taking to the streets on Saturday evening after pubs reopened as part of further lockdown easing in the UK.

Crowded scenes in one of London’s biggest party districts has sparked concern that people were not following social distancing rules. Many took to Twitter to share videos and pictures of the “absolute madness” as the streets appeared rammed with people stood close together.

Another social media user was concerned about coronavirus cases rising after people being in such close proximity.

They wrote on Twitter: “Soho, London, earlier this evening. Wondering how quickly this will hit the R rate…”

A third person added they thought the packed streets were “embarrassing”.

They said: “Soho and England. What a slap in the face for the NHS, police, fire service, teachers and all those in the public sector.

“Please tell me how to tell my Year 6 bubble to social distance whilst adults dont? Im so so angry. Embarrassing.”

Another person said: “I’m horrified by the sights in Soho tonight.”

But another person questioned Mr Johnson’s reasoning behind allowing pubs to reopen.

They said: “We will all be blamed when for the second peak.

“It really comes down to @BorisJohnson making the terrible decision to reopen on #SuperSaturday.

“Why not stagger and ease into a reopening, instead of unleashing the scenes in #Soho that we are seeing. This could have been avoided.

“Videos show cars being unable to srive down the street as people dance and block the roads.”

It comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson said at a Downing Street press conference on Friday that people needed to focus on supporting the livelihoods of businesses across country.

But he added people must do so responsibly.

He said: “Lockdown only succeeded in controlling the virus because everyone worked together, and we will only succeed in reopening if everyone works together again, because we are not out of the woods yet.

“The virus is still with us and the spike in Leicester has shown that.

“If it starts running out of control again this government will not hesitate in putting on the brakes and re-imposing restrictions.

“Anyone who flouts social distancing and COVID-Secure rules is not only putting us all at risk but letting down those businesses and workers who have done so much to prepare for this new normal.

“So as we take this next step, our biggest step yet, on the road to recovery, I urge the British people to do so safely.”

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