Student, 19, to stand trial accused of organising party for 50 guests during lockdown


George MartinTue, 9 February 2021, 1:48 pm

The event took place on Harlaxton Drive, Nottingham in September. (Google)
The event took place on Harlaxton Drive, Nottingham in September. (Google)

A student is due to stand trial after allegedly holding a party for 50 people despite the nationwide coronavirus lockdown.

Bailey Stancer, 19, has already been fined £10,000 after officers broke up the gathering at Harlaxton Drive, Lenton, Nottingham, on 11 September.

But the University of Nottingham student has not paid his fine and denied organising the event at Nottingham Magistrates’ Court on Monday.

He will now face a two-day trial on 4 August at the same court and was released on unconditional bail, Nottinghamshire Police said.

Nottingham Magistrates Court   (Photo by Emma Coles - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
The trial will take place at Nottingham Magistrates Court. (Getty)

Overall, 15 fines for holding gatherings of more than 30 people were issued by the force between 27 March 2020 and 17 January 2021, according to latest police figures.

Under the government’s current lockdown guidance, you are not to meet people socially unless you live together or form a support bubble.

Last month the government introduced a new £800 fine for those who flout coronavirus rules by attending house parties will come into force next week.

The penalty will apply to all those caught at the gatherings where more than 15 people are present, and double for each subsequent offence up to a maximum of £6,400.

The organisers of house parties also face a maximum fine of £10,000.

Announcing the new rules last month, home secretary Priti Patel said: “Such irresponsible behaviour poses a significant threat to public health – not only to those in attendance, but also our wonderful police officers.

“We will not stand by while a small number of individuals put others at risk.”

Martin Hewitt, chair of the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC), warned: “Gatherings where people are in close contact with each other in confined spaces will allow the virus to spread, and anyone who organises one will be given a fixed penalty notice and so will those who choose to attend.

“This is about saving lives.

“When we see people that are putting others and themselves in danger, we’ll not waste time trying to reason with them, they are demonstrating no regard for the safety of others or even themselves.”

At the end of January, more than 42,000 fines had been issued by police for breaches of coronavirus laws since they came into force.

The NPCC has said 80% of all coronavirus notices were given to people aged between 18 and 39.