Soho streets as coronavirus curfew kicks in with packed Tubes and busy taxi ranks
Revellers braved the rain and pandemic to hit the tiles in London’s best known night-life district.
Despite the sodden and slippery pavements people glammed up and made the most of the weekend in Soho on Saturday night.
Crowds of people could be seen packed into the area’s bars and pubs.
Ahead of the curfew, groups braved the weather to drink outside bars.
Some venues put seats outside and protected customers from the rain with large umbrellas.
As the 10pm curfew brought in by the government last month neared however, the typically late-night establishments began to empty.
A number of people wore coats and large jackets to keep them warm and dry.
Those who didn’t used bags as makeshift umbrellas.
Calls for last orders at 9pm led to a steady trickle of punters out onto the streets.
Shortly after watering holes had shut up at 10pm the area was uncannily quiet, with just a few stragglers drinking beer from takeaway cups.
The biggest buzz could be found under the awning of Leicester Square Underground Station, where people sought shelter from the inclement weather.
Taxi ranks were also bustling with people desperate to get a ride home into the warmth.
The 10pm curfew for pubs, bars and restaurants has been fiercely enforced by some police forces.
Bim’s Burger restaurant in Ilford, east London, was slapped with a £1,000 fine for serving a customer after 10pm.
The hungry punter was allowed to stand inside to wait for his food for a full four minutes past 10pm.
“Our staff were under the impression that if an order was placed by 10pm it could still be served,” the restaurant said in a statement.
“The food took less than four minutes to arrive and he left at 10.04 pm.
“Our staff were then shocked to be informed that they had breached the new laws by a matter of four minutes.”
Along with the 10pm closing times, all hospitality venues must now be table service only to try to help contain the spread of the virus.
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