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Police and council secure closure order of residential property where 200 people had gathered

Greater Manchester Police and Manchester City Council have obtained a three-month closure order of a residential property where 200 people had gathered.

GMP said that at around 10.10pm on Saturday 15 August 2020, police were called to the property on Harlow Drive, Gorton. Officers were “pelted with missiles”, it said.

A fixed penalty notice was issued to the tenant.

Manchester and Salford Magistrates Court has now made a three month closure order. This prohibits access to the premises by anyone except the property owner(s) and tenant(s).

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Inspector Jim Adams of GMP’s City of Manchester district, said: “Throughout COVID-19, GMP has been engaging with people in Gorton and I would like to thank the majority for being compliant with the restrictions.

“However, this incident was completely unacceptable and incomprehensible so I am pleased that the court has accepted our application to extend the 48-hour closure notice to ensure that there are no further illegal large gatherings at this property.”

He added: “I understand that this is a frustrating time – many of us want to see our loved ones but we need to continue complying. Enforcement is a last resort for GMP but today’s closure order is a warning that officers will take action if/ when necessary.”

Cllr Nigel Murphy, Deputy Leader of Manchester City Council, said: "This was a particularly flagrant breach of COVID-19 restrictions, which are in place to protect everyone in our communities and must be respected. It is only if we all play our part by acting responsibly and doing our bit that we will start to see cases coming down, thus avoiding the risk of further restrictions being brought into force.

"We welcome this tough action, which serves as a reminder that public health must be our first priority and that selfish breaches of the rules will not be tolerated."

Nic Kershaw, Chief Executive at One Manchester, said: “We’re aware of an illegal gathering that took place at one of our properties in Gorton on Saturday night.

“We don’t condone any gatherings of this kind. We’re working closely with Greater Manchester Police and Manchester City Council and we support the action that has been taken. The safety of our customers, colleagues and communities remains our highest priority.”

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