A widow tells ITV News London of her 'disgust' as the first Covid fines are handed out for Downing Street lockdown parties.
A Buckinghamshire widow who lost her husband to Covid says she harbours "disdain and hatred" for those involved in the partygate scandal as the first fines were handed out. Fran Hall's husband Steve caught Covid the day they married and he died three weeks later.
Mr Mead's death, a day before his 66th birthday, came during lockdown restrictions when funeral numbers were restricted and relatives not allowed to be with loved ones. "I'm just disgusted that the people over in Downing Street saw fit to do what they liked while we had restricted numbers at funerals and were not allowed to be with people while they were dying. People were separated from people they loved and we all followed the law," Fran told ITV News London. On Tuesday it was revealed 20 fines relating to the Met Police partygate investigation would be issued after officers saw evidence suggesting Covid rules had been broken without reasonable excuse. The Met, which is investigating at least 12 allegedly illegal gatherings on government premises during the coronavirus pandemic said it would not release the names of the people it fines. It is not clear whether Boris Johnson, who is known to have attended a number of the events, is one of those people to receive fines, but Number 10 has previously said it will reveal if the prime minister is issued with a fixed penalty notice. "I have complete disdain and hatred for the people who have made those selfish decisions to do what they like when the rest of us are trying to keep each other safe," Fran said. "He was only my husband for three weeks," she explained.
Steve was also living with prostate cancer which meant he was not a priority for intensive care. "On the day we got married he tested positive for Covid and we found out a couple of days later so our entire three weeks of marriage was him dying with Covid. "I looked after him for a week but his breathing then got too bad," she added. More than 100 people were under investigation over alleged Covid breaches and it is understood that more fines are likely to follow as Operation Hillman, as the probe is known, progresses. Number 10, ahead of the Met update, said: “While there’s a live police investigation it wouldn’t be appropriate to comment.”