Nine people have been fined for breaching lockdown rules after Wiltshire Police were called to a house party in Amesbury.

Officers were called to an address in Shears Drive yesterday, with nine adults and a child having a barbecue in the back garden.

Each adult was fined £200 as the gathering was under 15 people. Over this limit, and the fine quadruples to £800.

Superintendent Dave Minty said that the incident was “shocking” and said there was “no excuse” for gatherings.

Police were called to the property in Shears Drive at around 4:45pm on February 1 following concerns being raised by the public.

There, they found nine adults, aged between 20 and 44, having a barbecue in the back garden, as well as a child. They all lived in the Amesbury and Salisbury area.

Each adult was issued with a £200 fixed penalty notice for the offence, and dispersed.

Superintendent Dave Minty, from Wiltshire Police, said he was disappointed by the blatant breach of the lockdown rules.

He said: "Following on from the house party in Swindon over the weekend, which had 23 people in attendance, it is shocking to see a similar incident in Amesbury yesterday.

"It goes without saying that there can be no excuse for these types of gatherings - the rules are crystal clear and have been in place for some time.

"We are now in our third national lockdown and everybody knows that we are all being asked to limit social contact and stay at home to protect the NHS.

"The people organising and attending these parties are showing a selfish disregard for the health and safety of the general public and we will not tolerate it."

Under current lockdown rules, gatherings of under 15 are an offence, carrying a penalty of £200, or £100 if paid within 14 days. This doubles for each further offence to a maximum of £6,400. For gatherings of over 15 people, penalties of £800 are in place, again doubling each time until £6,400.

Those organising gatherings of more than 30 can be fined up to £10,000.

As of the week up to January 27, Amesbury had recorded 47 cases of Covid, and had a rolling rate of 380.4 per 100,000 people. This rate is significantly higher than the English national average, of 294.2.