With many people now counting down to the re-opening of pubs next weekend the police service could be put under huge pressure as lockdown eases, says the chair of Cambridgeshire Police Federation.

And Liz Groom has urged the public to remember that there are still social distancing and other restrictions in place.

“I think everyone appreciates the need to get the economy moving again after three months of restrictions on the way in which we live, work and socialise,” says Liz, “Many people will be looking forward to being able to visit pubs again and that is totally understandable, people are craving some normality.

“But for police officers I fear there are going to be some real issues around people drinking too much and behaving irresponsibly. Pubs are not going to be able to accommodate as many people as they would normally so there is a risk that people who are turned away will cause trouble.

“I think there will be huge pressure on the police service and the NHS next weekend so I just hope that the public can remain mindful not just of the rules on social distancing but also the role of the emergency services during lockdown.

“People, quite rightly, stood and clapped for the NHS and other key workers every Thursday in the first months of lockdown so I hope that is not forgotten now.”

John Apter, national chair of the Police Federation, has also expressed his concerns.

“The announcement of this easing of lockdown has been done in such a way that a head of steam will be gathering between now and 4 July, which could be seen by some as a countdown to party time, which is not accurate and certainly not the message we want to send,” he said.