Enfield Covid marshals have broken up hundreds of groups and visited thousands of businesses to ensure lockdown rules are being followed.

The marshals were reintroduced on December 17 when Enfield and the rest of London were placed into Tier 4 restrictions.

These marshals patrol high streets and some parks to break up gatherings, offer advice to businesses and refer any premises breaking the rules to Enfield Councils Environmental Health and Trading Standards officers for follow up and, if necessary, enforcement action.

The council says that in just one month, 478 groups have been dispersed and more than 4,600 businesses have been visited by the marshals.

Cabinet Member for Licensing and Regulatory Services, Cllr George Savva, said: “The rules on face coverings, social distancing, and gatherings are very clear and I am pleased to say that most people in Enfield respect these rules and each other.

“It’s vital that we all continue to follow public health advice, particularly as one in three people with coronavirus is asymptomatic and could spread the virus without knowing. It is only by ensuring everyone follows the advice we can drive coronavirus rates down, help to keep Enfield safe and protect the most vulnerable in our society.

“Our Environmental Health and Trading Standards officers have been engaging with and inspecting businesses throughout the whole pandemic and taking enforcement action as required. I would like to thank these officers for their ongoing and hard work during very difficult circumstances.”

While Enfield’s Covid marshals are on hand to provide advice, the police can take action against those gathering illegally and issue fines.

People can be given a fixed penalty notice (FPN) of £200 for the first offence, doubling for further offences up to a maximum of £6,400.