Police give Covid breach warning to pensioner for having tea with neighbours in communal garden


A pensioner was reportedly left stunned after being given a warning for breaching coronavirus rules after enjoying a socially distanced cup of tea with her neighbours in their communal garden.

Lesley Magovern told ITV News that her mother had been watching television in bed in her Charlton Kings home when there was a knock on her door at 9.45pm.

She was surprised to find it was police at her door there give her a warning for breaking Covid-19 restrictions.

“It was very late and she wondered really who it could be,” Ms Magovern said. “My mother is quite deaf and she asked who it was and she thought the voice said ‘It’s me’. Then mother assumed it was in fact me and she then opened the door.”

“There were two officers stood there, a man and a woman with masks on and they asked if they could come in and speak to her,” she said.

“They did not show her any identification so she just trusted the uniform and she was quite frightened,” she continued, adding: “My mother has never been in trouble with the police in her life.”

The pensioner was let off with a warning but was told that if she was caught chatting with neighbours outside, she would receive a fine.

The incident left both the pensioner and her daughter disturbed.

“I can not believe the police travelled from Gloucester to Charlton Kings so late for something so ridiculous,” Mrs Magovern said.

The Independent has contacted Gloucestershire Police for comment.

A spokesperson for the department told ITV that police had been responding to a “report of a potential Covid breach” on Tuesday 9 March at 1.30pm.

The spokesperson said someone had reported a “gathering involving people from multiple households in a residential garden” taking place.

“Covid response officers attended later that day at around 9.45pm where some residents were spoken to and given words of advice around current restrictions,” they said.

“Officers are deployed to incidents based on an assessment of the threat, risk and harm of the incident and in this case officers who are part of the Covid response team and are deployed across the county attended later that evening,” the spokesperson added.

Since 8 March, outdoor recreation has been allowed, but only with your household or one other person.


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