English revellers enjoy New Year's Eve party

Party like it’s 2022!: Revellers hit the pubs and bars in cities such as London, Liverpool and Newcastle as they prepare to welcome in the New Year Covid restriction free – unlike in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland

  • England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland have different rules for going out on New Year’s Eve
  • Prime Minister Boris Johnson said people should be cautious when going out to parties this evening 
  • In Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, people have been advised to limit mixing with strangers 
  • Thousands of people have travelled to England to take advantage of the less stringent Covid-19 regulations 

Thousands of revellers headed out for an early New Year’s Eve party, with their numbers boosted by Scots and Welsh people fleeing domestic Covid-19 restrictions. 

The party goers were able to enjoy the hottest New Year’s Eve since records began – with the temperature hitting more than 60f.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has cancelled the city’s traditional firework display because of the threat of Covid-19 and the Trafalgar Square party has also been scrapped.  

Prime Minister Boris Johnson urged people to get tested before meeting up for the New Year Eve festivities. However, many have decided to stay at home to avoid possible exposure to the Omicron variant. 

He said: ‘Everybody should enjoy New Year but in a cautious and sensible way – take a test, ventilation, think about others but, above all, get a booster.’

Those travelling by taxis or public transport should wear a mask, although they are not required in bars, restaurants or nightclubs.  

Anyone in England going to a nightclub has been warned the will have to show their NHS Covid pass. 

The PM, unlike the First Ministers of Scotland and Wales, decided against imposing additional restrictions in England, despite record-breaking Covid-19 infections fuelled by the Omicron variant.  

Scotland’s Deputy First Minister John Swinney criticised those planning to travel to England to celebrate Hogmanay, claiming it was the ‘wrong course of action’ and against the ‘spirit’ of the regulations.    

Revellers such as these two ladies in Leeds were out early for New Year’s Eve, enjoying the unseasonably warm weather conditions ahead of tonight’s party

Friends took advantage of the lax Covid-19 restrictions in England to meet up and celebrate the end of 2021 in pubs and nightclubs 

Thousands of people were in Leeds City centre hours before midnight, such as these three ladies outside a city bar

In Cardiff, bars and streets which would have normally been packed were empty as a result of stringent Covid-19 rules 

Thousands of Scots headed south to towns and cities in England such as Newcastle and Blackpool to celebrate Hogmanay

This group of friends left Scotland early to celebrate the end of 2021 in a Newcastle bar or nightclub 

The Newcastle Arms Hotel in Coldstream on the Scottish borders was very quiet as it was just north of the border, pictured owner Robin Lees

Newcastle bars are expecting a busier than normal night with the number of Scottish people who have crossed the border

In Scotland, events have one-metre social distancing and are limited to 100 people standing indoors, 200 people sitting indoors and 500 people outdoors, with one-metre physical distancing in place in all indoor hospitality and leisure settings. These restrictions include gatherings for Hogmanay celebrations.

Where alcohol is being served, table service is also required. 

The Scottish Government has urged people to ‘stay at home as much as possible’, with any meet-ups to be limited to a maximum of three households.

Since December 14, people have been asked to reduce their social contact as much as possible by meeting in groups of no more than three households.

In Northern Ireland, nightclubs are closed this evening and dancing has been banned in hospitality venues. 

For those venturing out to restaurants, table numbers must be limited to six people and diners must remain seated for table service.

In Wales,  current rules say groups of no more than six are allowed to meet in pubs, cinemas and restaurants, while licensed premises can offer table service only.

In pubs and other licensed premises, face masks should be worn, with contact tracing details collected, and customers should observe two-metre social distancing rules.

Nightclubs have been closed since Boxing Day in Wales. A maximum of 30 people can attend indoor events and a maximum of 50 people can be present for outdoor events.

Eren Saygilier (left) and Kerri Patterson, from Berwick-upon-Tweed, went north to Edinburgh on New Year’s Eve, despite official festivities having been cancelled by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon 

Some people stood outside the iconic French House in Soho, pictured, enjoying a glass of wine

A hoarding has been erected around Eros to save him from revellers ringing in the New Year in a few hours’ time

Some people were out early to beat the crowds that are expected to flock into town and city centres across England 

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