Drinkers pack into pubs and clubs after a day on beaches

After the beaches, come the bars: Drinkers pack into pubs and clubs after a day spent on crowded beaches in 34.5C sunshine – but where’s the social distancing?

  • After a boiling day, people flocked to bars, beer gardens and clubs as they ignored social distancing
  • The drinking comes as experts warn that gathering in pubs has more risk of spreading Covid-19 than planes
  • Top temperature was 34.5C in Frittenden (Kent), Wiggonholt (West Sussex), and Herstmonceux (East Sussex)

Britons flocked to pubs and bars this evening after yet another day of scorching weather – defying social distancing measures as they packed into clubs after a day spent in the sunshine.

Revellers were seen enjoying a drink after thousands crowded on beaches and gathered in parks with friends to soak up temperatures of 95F (35C).

Drinkers flouted social distancing rules as they took to the towns on what is the hottest weekend of the year so far. 

Desperate police today turned an influx of staycationers away because of Friday’s ‘bedlam’ – as soaring mercury left officials worried about what tomorrow could bring.

Swarms of party goers were seen without face masks and defying social distancing measures as they queued outside a party hotspots. 

Saturday’s top temperature was 34.5C at Frittenden in Kent, Wiggonholt in West Sussex, and Herstmonceux in East Sussex, the Met Office said.

Revellers make their way for another night of boozing on what is the hottest weekend of the year

Three women holding their phones and bags made their way to a 21st birthday celebration

A group of drinkers – clearly defying social distancing rules – gathered together to enjoy this evening’s cooler temperatures

Swarms of party goers were seen without face masks as they queued outside a nightclub in Blackpool 

One woman is given a piggy back by a friend (left) as they make their way to enjoy an evening of drinking, while two women wearing stilettos cling to a lamppost in a bid to steady themselves (right)

Crowds of people defied social distancing on what is the hottest weekend of the year this evening

Tonight’s antics come as experts warn that people drinking together in pubs carry more risk of spreading the coronavirus than planes

The heat brought with it an influx of water-related tragedies as a man in his 20s drowned in a water-filled quarry, a six-year-old boy almost died after his inflatable swan was swept out to sea and men were pictured jumping into the sea at Durdle Door – an activity that critically injured two men in May.     

In North Wales, described as being a scene of ‘bedlam’ yesterday, a councillor’s plea for visitors to avoid towns was ignored as the local police force reported a ‘considerable build up’ of traffic in Abersoch while drivers made their way to the beach.   

Later in the day a man in his 20s drowned in a water-filled quarry at Bawsey Pits near King’s Lynn, Norfolk, after ‘getting into trouble in the water’.

Emergency services were called to the scene at about 11.30am on Saturday after the man was reported missing. 

The capital basked in sunshine on Friday. In Heathrow and Kew Gardens the hottest August day since 2003 was recorded as temperatures reached 97.5F (36.4C)

Elsewhere, a hero builder rushed to save the life of a six-year-old boy who was found face down and unconscious in the water after he was swept out to sea on an inflatable swan at Black Rock Sands in North Wales.     

Tonight’s antics come as experts warn that people drinking together in pubs carry more risk of spreading the coronavirus than planes.

Dr Julian W Tang, honorary associate professor of respiratory sciences at the University of Leicester, said the most common method of transmission in the UK is probably ‘conversational exposure’. 

He said being in a busy pub is worse than being on an aeroplane because planes have better ventilation. 

Pigeons land on Brighton beach where bags of rubbish was dumped yesterday after another busy day on the seafront 

Southend beach in Essex was packed with visitors trying to cool down from the heat today by having a splash around in the sea

Holidaymakers and sunbathers once again flocked to the beach at the seaside resort of Lyme Regis in Dorset today

People enjoy the hot weather on a packed Bournemouth beach in Dorset at about 3pm this afternoon

People enjoy the hot weather on the banks of the River Lea in east London, where the mercury has hit the highest since 2003

People walk along the beach front on Boscombe beach in Dorset. Very few people were wearing masks as they walked closely together – despite cases of coronavirus rising in the UK

Dr Tang thinks people do not realise how safe planes actually are because of their good ventilation.      

He said: ‘To be honest, on a plane the danger is from your nearest neighbours because that air is not filtered away quickly enough before you inhale it. 

‘That’s the main risk on a plane.’ 

‘I don’t see planes as a major risk. If you ask me would I rather fly on a plane or go to a pub, I’d rather fly on a plane.’ 

A RNLI Lifeguard patrols Boscombe beach in Dorset as the heatwave sweeping the UK brings another busy day

The beach at Southend in Essex was packed out as desperate sunseekers defied social distancing to fill every spot of sand

People cooling down on the River Cam in Cambridge as they go for a punt with glasses of prosecco in hand as the heatwave continues through the weekend

Much like yesterday, crowds appeared unbothered by fears of coronavirus as groups mixed without masks – despite rising cases in the UK driving fears of a second wave. 

The chaos comes amid a plea for ‘bold’ young people to continue following social distancing rules as fears grow that they are catching the virus without knowing and passing it on to other members of their household.  

Meanwhile, the Local Government Association is calling for councils to be given more powers to shut down rule-breaking pubs nationwide, with revellers expected to pack into venues up and down the country once again later today. 

Dylan Bullard, a councillor from Pwllheli, North Wales, told the Telegraph the town was a scene of ‘bedlam’ yesterday.

He added: ‘If you’re thinking of coming into town, please consider leaving it to later. The car parks are full and cars are parked illegally. Social distancing is impossible at the moment, and people are queuing to get into shops.’ 

The Met Office said temperatures had already reached 95F at Frittenden in Kent early this afternoon, with a chance the mercury could rise as high as 97F in the South East later in the day.

People enjoy the hot weather at Bournemouth beach in Dorset. Hundreds of sunseekers took to their cars to head down for a day at the beach

People enjoy the hot weather at Boscombe beach in Dorset. Gazebos and a large tent were set up to shade beach-goers from the intense afternoon sun

Sunseekers play volleyball on Boscome beach in Dorset today as crowds once again flocked down to the coast in huge numbers

HM Coastguard warned people to stay safe on the beach after rescue teams responded to 70 callouts across the UK by midday today – ‘above average for this time of year’, one week after its busiest day for more than four years.  

The very hot conditions, which have been caused by air warming up over France before being drawn north, have led to health warnings. 

Britain has never recorded two days with temperatures over 99F (37C) in the same year since records began.

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