14 people have been fined for attending a party which broke lockdown restrictions in the Holylands
The PSNI made one arrest and fined 14 others
The PSNI have fined 14 people for attending a party in the Holylands in South Belfast.
Officers who were called to the incident on Agincourt Street also made one arrest in connection with the violation of lockdown restrictions and for assaulting a police officer.
The party took place in the area between the Ormeau Road and Queen’s University Belfast, in an area which is heavily populated by students at both universities.
The PSNI received reports at 02:00 GMT on Wednesday of a crowd of 50 congregating on Agincourt Street.
This wasn’t the first time the PSNI had visited the scene, following an earlier encounter which seen officers visiting two properties in the area, handing out 14 £200 fines.
This isn’t the first time police have been alerted to residents breaking restrictions in the area, with QUB revealing that over 100 students had been fined for breaking restrictions since term commenced.
Commenting on the matter, Chief Inspector Gavin Kirkpatrick described how this incident in itself marks the second consecutive night that police had responded to complaints in the area.
He said that, “Police will robustly challenge and deal with people who are either disregarding the health regulations or engaging in this type of anti-social and criminal behaviour.”
In addition to this, Kirkpatrick said that police patrols in the area have increased again and the PSNI “will continue to liaise with the universities, colleges and other partners to address this issue… [who]… will consider their own sanctions against any students involved.”
“As huge numbers of people across the country make sacrifices – whether isolating, working from home or having to again temporarily close their businesses to try and prevent the spread of Covid 19 – those who are visiting or staying in this residential area must take responsibility for their behaviour.”
As the battle against coronavirus continues, QUB have recently announced that they are to launch an asymptomatic testing service for students who wish to travel home for the winter break.
The services which have launched this week from the Whitla Hall on campus will provide students with results in one hour.
Whether or not students will abuse this ease of access to testing by holding parties in areas such as the Holylands, is yet to be seen as the service remains in its infancy.