A woman has shared images of crowds in Blackpool - a town exempt from coronavirus restrictions taking effect in most of Lancashire this week.

The rest of Lancashire will be banned from socialising with people outside their own household or support bubble and a curfew will be in place on hospitality venues between 10pm and 5am.

Twitter user @staceywacywoo posted this morning, "Lancashire going into lockdown with the exception of Blackpool??? This was Blackpool last night! no social distancing anywhere, no masks worn in any amusements or shop...it’s a joke! I took these pictures myself so before anyone says it clever angles etc it isn’t! @piersmorgan"

Infection rates in Blackpool are lower than in some parts of Lancashire but the area has seen an increase in positive cases.

The town’s famous Illuminations are to run until January, with the normal run extended for two months to boost tourism.

Visitors had flocked to the town ahead of the lockdown against police advice, who had urged people not to travel to the town for a one last blast.

Deputy Chief Constable of Lancashire Constabulary, Terry Woods, said: "Going to Blackpool, if you’re not from Blackpool, this weekend and mingling in any large crowds, that is not looking after my family and it wouldn’t be looking after your family.

"What we need to do is focus in on protecting yourself and your family. Make sensible decisions to protect yourselves, going to Blackpool in mass numbers is quite the opposite of protecting yourselves."

On Friday, Blackpool’s director of public health Dr Arif Rajpura strongly advised the public to comply with the COVID guidelines, such as wearing face coverings, social distancing and the newly-introduced 'rule of six' – or face the consequences. 

He said: “The special measures that have been announced by the Government across large swathes of the north of England over the past 48 hours illustrate that nowhere is immune to this sort of intervention.

“It is absolutely critical that residents and businesses adhere to the new ‘rule of six’ restrictions and follow all Covid guidelines around social distancing and wearing of face coverings.

“The same advice goes to those visiting our resort. The only way to stop the spread of the virus is to respect the rules which are there for a reason.”