The Anonymous Widower

Greater Manchester Police Warning After 660 Parties Shut Down

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on the BBC.

This is the introductory paragraph.

Greater Manchester Police has warned people not to breach lockdown rules over Easter after it had to break up 660 parties last weekend.

This was also reported.

  • There were 1,132 coronavirus-related breaches reported between Saturday and Tuesday.
  • Some of the 494 house parties had DJs, fireworks and bouncy castles.
  • There were also 166 street parties.
  • One woman in Bury was arrested.

The force also had to deal with 122 different groups gathering to play sports, 173 more gatherings in parks and 112 incidents of anti-social behaviour and public disorder.

There have been some similar reports in London, but not on this scale.

So why is it, that Manchester disobeyed the rules so much?

Is it because the BBC is in Manchester and it’s easy to report?

April 9, 2020 - Posted by | Health | , , , , ,


  1. People are breaking lockdown; a live on a daily busy road, and I can hear them going home at night after parties, and I can see some of them with a garden full of people. I am in the extremely vulnerable category, it is scary. I just don’t leave the house at all. Husband leaves for exercise and to go to the allotment. Our food comes from Ocado, and a few gluten free bits which Ocado didnt have came from Amazon Pantry. I was talking to a friend earlier today, and her songs 50th birthday party was moved on to Zoom. Each “guest” got dressed up and had a “dinner party” in their own home, and were all on zoom and chatted and laughed and talked and apparently it was great fun. She says they will all celebrate again after lockdown, but they still had a party on his birthday. There is no need to break the lockdown.

    Comment by nosnikrapzil | April 9, 2020 | Reply

  2. Almost certainly! Newsrooms are habitually short-staffed. Few traditional ‘reporters’ actually go out to get stories and research them. Research takes time and therefore money – too much for cash-starved, time-poor news organisations. Freelancers get paid by the word written, which doesn’t cover the much longer time needed to source and research genuinely ground-breaking stories. With so little money in the media economy to pay for properly researched stories, most papers and broadcasters fill their spaces and news schedules with rewritten press releases, official statements and reports of set-piece events, plus a large percentage of comment, analysis and opinion (not ‘news’ at all, of course). Any live reporting is likely to be what’s happening on the newsroom’s doorstep, because it’s quick, easy and cheap to do.

    Lockdown-flouters are definitely not confined to Manchester. In my part of south London, it’s very clear that while most people are being responsible, there’s a sizeable minority who are happy to flout both the spirit and the letter of the lockdown regulations. I doubt that’s through ignorance. Having seen the wealthy, privileged types concerned, I suspect it’s down to an arrogant belief that ‘those rules don’t apply to me’. I’m afraid I have to single out runners/joggers, few of whom seem prepared to keep their distance from other people on the pavement. Seeing one weaving through the massive, multiple queues for supermarkets on my high street this morning it’s clear that there needs to be a strong, visible and active police presence on the streets. As most of us don’t see a police officer on the street from one end of the year to the other, it’s hardly surprising there’s been virtually no enforcement in London.

    Fines are no deterrent to the well off, so I’d recommend publishing rule-breakers’ photos online. Social media shaming may be distasteful, but it is highly effective. Perhaps we need to rewrite the tagline of that First World War poster, ‘Daddy, what did YOU do in the Great Virus War?’

    When all this is over, the profit-gougers, the stockpilers and the lockdown-flouters will face a reckoning from their communities.

    The virus will never be defeated so long as the irresponsible are allowed to laugh at the rules and the authorities are nowhere to be seen.

    Comment by Stephen Spark | April 9, 2020 | Reply

    • The numbers in the report appear to have come from the Police.

      But, it does seem to me, that over the years, the Police more regularly publish stories that will get them more resources!

      Comment by AnonW | April 9, 2020 | Reply

      • “over the years, the Police more regularly publish stories that will get them more resources”

        Definitely the case. For many years I have been analysing the media reporting of one event: Notting Hill Carnival. (My analysis, when I was at the University of Westminster, extended back to the event’s start in 1966, and it continues today.) A clear pattern emerges of the way the police press office has for a considerable time expertly ‘spun’ stories to exactly the end you suggest.

        There is a symbiotic relationship between hard-pressed journalists desperate for easy-to-write clickbait stories (the ready meals of journalism!) and the police (especially the Met) wanting to push a particular agenda. Researchers who are prepared to spend some time and effort digging deeper into these ‘police-sponsored’ stories tend find that a rather different picture emerges.

        While there’s no conspiracy as such, every media consumer ought to be aware that the police press office operates like a corporate PR department or lobbying organisation. The Met’s press office (the one I’m familiar with) is a slick operator and is adept at using the increasingly weak and under-resourced media to further its interests. Many might welcome a better-resourced police force, but we should perhaps consider whether the end justifies the means. Personally, I’d prefer a little more upfront honesty and transparency.

        The emasculation of the Leveson Inquiry probably tells us all we need to know about the continuing ‘unholy alliance’ of police and media.

        Comment by Stephen Spark | April 9, 2020

  3. Your expertise may be able to shine a light on a proposition of mine. When my wife and son died from cancer and I had a serious stroke, which left me unable to drive, I needed to go somewhere with lots of available public transport. So I moved back to the area of my grandparents, here in De Beauvoir Town. The house was also good value, there was lots of public transport and I knew the area well, as in the 1970s, we’d lived in the Barbican and had had various friends in Hackney, who we’d met through our children’s school.

    In 2010, Dalston Kingsland was rough, with idle youth hanging around. But then along came the Overground and lots of shiny new buses and the idle youth disappeared. Talking to friends, including the mother of one of the former idle youth, the view I got, was that the youth could now get to work, that exists in places like the City, the West End and other places.

    It is my view, that the dramatic improvement in public transport, meant people could get to better jobs. And the perception of crime has dropped.

    I was also talking to a policeman near Crouch Hill about good public transport giving the idle youth access to work and he felt that since the Gospel Oak to Barking Line had been upgraded with new trains, behaviour had got better.

    I have tried to find studies on the Internet about the link between the quality of public transport and crime, and I can’t find anything.

    But there are examples from other places, where improved public transport has been followed by a drop in crime and an improvement in behaviour.

    Comment by AnonW | April 10, 2020 | Reply

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