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People in Leicester have been ordered to stay at home since Monday

Police say they’re bracing themselves for a busy weekend as pubs stay closed in Leicester but reopen across the country.

More officers would be on duty than during a typical New Year’s Eve, Leicestershire Police said.

Meanwhile, hospital bosses in Leicester are preparing for “typical behaviours of New Year’s Eve”.

Leicester became subject to the UK’s first local lockdown on Monday following a spike in Covid-19 cases.

Leicestershire Police Assistant Chief Constable Kerry Smith said plans were being made for when restrictions are eased outside the lockdown boundary on Saturday.

“We realise it is a difficult situation and we are all still adapting to these new challenges,” she said.

“We will be continuing our approach of engaging, explaining and encouraging people to do the right thing.

“Of course, we have the option of enforcement open to us which we will use where appropriate.”

Rebecca Brown, chief executive of Leicester’s Hospitals, said the trust was preparing for the “double impact” over the weekend.

She said they were working with the ambulance service and the police “to make sure that we’re ready to support not only a surge in Covid but also a surge in typical behaviours of New Year’s Eve”.

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National Express’s newly Covid-compliant coaches will not visit Leicester

British Transport Police is also deploying extra officers to Leicester railway station to check advice on non-essential travel is being followed.

It said rail users could expect to see an “enhanced presence” after the government said lockdown residents should only travel when essential.

Meanwhile door staff at a number of bars in Nottingham will be checking ID to keep out people from Leicester.

Rob Glasby, manager of Playhouse Bar and Kitchen and spokesman for an unofficial union representing hospitality staff in the city, said it was an important precaution aimed at keeping staff and other customers safe.

Nottinghamshire Police’s chief constable Craig Guildford said his force would also be monitoring the situation.

He said: “If there’s any intelligence that comes from Leicestershire about, for instance, a minibus of people coming to Nottingham for a night out, clearly we’d want to move into our education mode for those individuals.”

National Express has also said its coach services will not stop at Leicester during the lockdown period.

Leicester City’s home game against Crystal Palace on Saturday afternoon will go ahead as planned.

The restrictions are due to be reviewed by the government from 18 July.

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