Police seize thousands of pounds of equipment as illegal rave is shutdown

Police beak up an illegal rave in Tilbury last month Credit: ITV News

Thousands of pounds worth of equipment has been seized in Essex as new lockdown rules came into force.

Under the new measures, which started on Friday ahead of the bank holiday weekend, organisers of illegal raves will be hit with £10,000 fines.

Harlow police seized thousands of pounds of music equipment Credit: ITV News Anglia

The event was due to take place in the Burnt Mills area of the town yesterday.

Chief Inspector Lewis Basford said organisers of such events should ask themselves if it was worth the risk of the new fines.

“I want anyone who is planning to go to one of these events to think again.“It’s early in the evening and we’ve already successfully shut down one event, seized the equipment, and will be looking to identify the organiser and take them to court.“Our specially-trained public order officers will be working tirelessly to shut down any similar events in the county. Not only do these large-scale events carry the risk of spreading COVID-19, but we know that they’re often frequented by people who look to cause trouble for the sake of it, which will ruin the good time of anyone there.

My final message is to the organisers: we will seize the equipment – I don’t care if you’ve hired it from someone or if it’s yours, we will break up your event, and we can now fine you up to £10,000. Ask yourself, is it worth the risk?

Ch Insp Lewis Basford

Home Secretary, the Essex MP Priti Patel has defended the legislation, saying it represents a crackdown on "the most serious breaches of social distancing restrictions".

Priti Patel has defended the legislation Credit:

Writing in The Daily Telegraph, she said: "We will not allow this breathtakingly selfish behaviour from a senseless minority to jeopardise the progress we have made together."