Revellers pack out bars for festive fun on last Friday before vaccine passports

Pubs and bars were packed in towns and cities around the country on Friday as revellers enjoyed festive fun with fears tougher Covid restrictions are ahead due to the Omicron surge

Revellers have hit towns and cities across the UK in large numbers
Revellers have hit towns and cities across the UK in large numbers (pictured: Leeds)

Brits flocked to bars and nightclubs for Christmas drinks on the last Friday before vaccine passports and amid fears these venues could face tougher curbs.

With Boris Johnson already having introduced a Plan B to tackle the new Omicron variant, there have also been reports that the government is now considering a Plan C with stiffer measures.

This could mean face masks in all enclosed public spaces, the return of an NHS app with check-ins for bars and restaurants, and vaccine passports for more venues.

While they are reportedly being planned for January, scientists have said that they need to come in as early as next week if hospitalisations aren’t to swamp the NHS.

It led to many revellers heading out in towns and cities across the country with even queues gathering outside some popular venues on Thursday and Friday night.

This was the last Friday before vaccine passports are introduced for nightclubs



At the same time, work Christmas parties have been in full flow with people having a fun time with their colleagues.

The prime minister gave the go ahead for the parties although there has been advice that people should be tested.

Johnson said: “We don’t want nativity plays to be cancelled. We think that’s okay.

“Currently on what we can see, keep going with Christmas parties but obviously everybody should exercise caution.

Boris Johnson gave the go-ahead to Christmas parties but said people should take care


Getty Images)

“Have ventilation, wash your hands and getting a test before you go is the sensible thing to do to give everybody else at the party the confidence that the person you’re meeting is not contagious.”

Ministers took part in a Cobra meeting on Friday where they looked at what steps can be taken to slow the spread of the Omicron variant, it is reported.

Data from the Department of Health shows that infections in London rose by 25.3% in the week up to December 4 which was the quickest of England’s nine regions.

People were in festive spirits up and down the country on Friday



There were 474.7 infections among 100,000 people tested which was the highest since last January.

So far it has not been reflected in hospitalisations and deaths but the data typically lags behind by several weeks as it takes time for people to become seriously ill.

Public health officials are advising that even if the rapidly spreading Omicron variant causes less serious illness than Delta, it could lead to 5,000 people being admitted to NHS hospitals per day.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid was given a presentation from the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) this week where he was told that “stringent action” would be needed on or before December 18 if the variant’s doubling time stays at 2.5 days, The Guardian reported.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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