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Police break-up rave at Lambeth nightclub in breach of Covid rules

News   •   May 18, 2021 13:20 BST

Police have broken up an unlicensed music event (UME) at an illegally operating nightclub in Lambeth.

Police were called at approximately 01:10hrs on Sunday, 16 May to a UME taking place on Lambeth Walk, Lambeth Road, SE1.

Officers forced entry into the premises and found approximately 60 people inside the venue.

Officers from the South Area Command Unit were assisted by colleagues from the emergency response team, Proactive Partnership Plus, Lambeth Council and Lambeth Licensing as they worked amid a hostile crowd to close down the UME and safely clear the surrounding area.

Several officers were assaulted and received minor injuries.

Two men were arrested in connection with the incident on Sunday, 16 May.

A 34-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of drunk and disorderly behaviour and taken to a south London police station. He was given a fixed penalty notice while in custody.

A 31-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of assault on an emergency worker and was charged and bailed to appear before Croydon Magistrates Court on Tuesday, 1 June.

Inspector Dave Laurie, Partnership & Prevention led for the Central South Command Unit, said: “Though restrictions are beginning to ease, this type of large gathering remains prohibited. Not only were those present taking unnecessary risks, they were also causing significant nuisance and disruption to the local area.

"Officers should feel safe when going about their work on the frontline. The response they received is unacceptable. The behaviour of a minority will not be tolerated and we will continue to work in partnership with bodies like the council to keep our communities safe."

Cllr Jacqui Dyer, Lambeth’s Deputy Leader (Jobs, Skills & Community Safety), said: "This is an extraordinary example of the commitment shown by Lambeth Council, the police and our partners to protect our residents.

“Venues such as these are illegal, unlicensed and can pose a serious risk to the safety of neighbouring residents as well as those who attend. They often lack fire safety precautions or basic first aid and lack the safeguards required of licensed, legal venues.

“The Covid-19 pandemic has not gone away. Mass gatherings involving 60 people, inside a small space with no social distancing is totally unacceptable."

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