A PUB in Farnworth was fined for breaching Covid-19 regulations after a raid revealed a group of people drinking inside the premises on the day hospitality venues reopened outside.

On April 12 police and council inspectors visited The Freemasons on Market Street, which is operated by Amber Taverns, and found around 10 people being served drinks inside.

Current Covid-19 guidance states that hospitality venues can only serve customers outside.

Bodycam footage was reviewed by licensing inspectors and the pub was found to be breaking the rules and a £1,000 fine was issued.

The pub has now been taken over by a new landlady.

Spot checks were being conducted on April 12 at various establishments to verify that correct Covid-19 measures were in place and rules observed.

A spokesperson for Bolton Council said:“This was a clear breach of the Covid-19 restrictions which are designed to keep both customers and staff safe.

“After reviewing the police bodycam footage of the incident, we issued the premises with a £1,000 fixed penalty notice.

“We continue to work closely with our partners in Greater Manchester Police to enforce the regulations and hold irresponsible business owners to account for putting the public at risk.”

Greater Manchester Police confirmed that they had attended the site and referred the incident to the licensing department at the council.

The new landlady of The Freemasons, Leanne Morrison, said: "I have run pubs for several years in Blackburn and I was called in to take over The Freemasons.

"I became the new landlady on April 22. I'm fully up to date with all the Covid-19 guidelines and training.

"I want to reassure customers that we are Covid safe."

Amber Taverns have been contacted for comment.

In line with the government's roadmap out of lockdown, outdoor hospitality venues were able to reopen from April 12 with table service in place.

Customers are able to sit as part of two households or under the rule of six and must order, eat and drink while seated.

If the easing of lockdown goes ahead as planned, Step 3 will see indoor hospitality reopen on May 17.

Diners must still comply with the rule of six or two households, and food and remain seated when ordering, eating and drinking.