Cops tell Tier 2 London pubs and restaurants to check photo IDs and ask for names & address to stop household mixing

COPS have told pubs and restaurants in London to snoop on their customers by checking IDs for names and addresses.

Landlords are urged to spy on boozers in a bid to stop households mixing.

It comes as half of Brits are now living in areas with either tier two or three restrictions – with rules including everything from a ban on casual sex to the closure of bars.

Now Scotland Yard has written to business-owners struggling under the new 10pm curfew to urge them to ask for names, addresses – and even photo ID, the Daily Mail reports.

Officers say they believe the checks will stop people joining mates from a different household for a pint inside – which is banned under the rules.

Business chiefs say the request places "completely unacceptable" demands on staff, and won't prove whether clientele are from the same household or not.

The Night Time Industries Association is also seeking legal advice over the "unlawful and misleading" letter.

Police forces around the UK are using Facebook to see whether landlords are letting customers flout social distancing rules.

It comes as Boris Johnson today forced Manchester into a tier three lockdown – despite the objections of local leaders.

News cameras filmed the moment the Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham found out that the area was heading into tougher restrictions with just £22million-worth in support yesterday.

Me Burnham apparently refused to accept £60million offered by the Government because he wanted an extra £5million.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said Greater Manchester has been given £22million for testing and contact tracing and that the offer of £60million for business support is still on the table if Mr Burnham "picks up the phone".

One Tory MP described the move as "insanity" and another warned it would be "damaging".

Venues in the hospitality, tourism and leisure industry are already required to record contact details of customers, visitors and staff for NHS Test and Trace.

But now the new letter, from a Metropolitan Police borough licensing team, aims to put more pressure on pubs to enforce lockdown.

It was sent last week after Mr Hancock announced that London would be designated a 'high risk' region.

People living in tier two areas can visit pubs and restaurants.

But they're only allowed to sit indoors with members of their own household.

Up to six people from different households can gather outside, as long as they're seated.

Pub-goers caught breaking the rules face a £200 fine but pubs and restaurants risk a £1,000 penalty.

The Met letter said: "Premises should take steps to satisfy themselves that the group (maximum six people) is only from one household or part of a support bubble.

"This could include requesting photographic identification with names and addresses."

Mike Kill, chief executive of the Night Time Industries Association, told the paper: "We have sought legal advice regarding the communication from the Metropolitan Police.

What are the rules in tier two areas?

Boris Johnson’s new three-step lockdown plan is designed to clear up confusion around restrictions

Areas in Tier Two – where there is a high risk of coronavirus – are banned from mixing with other households indoors, including in pubs.

When outside, only two households will be able to mix.

The Prime Minister said this tier reflects interventions in many local areas at the moment and "primarily aims to reduce household transmission by banning mixing indoors". 

Current social distancing measures, the "rule of six" outdoors and the 10pm curfew will continue in this tier.

And most areas which are currently subject to local restrictions will automatically move into it.

Certain businesses selling food or drink on their premises are required to close between 10pm and 5am.

But you'll still be able to get a takeaway where that's offered after 10pm – as long as this is through delivery service, click-and-collect or drive-thru.

Schools, universities and places of worship will remain open.

"We feel it's potentially unlawful and misleading advice. Suddenly demanding photo ID and proof of address could decimate businesses.

"If people turn up and their addresses or names don't match because people aren't married or older children have moved back home do they turn them away?

"We have also seen in some cities police looking at social media like Facebook to say customers are not social distancing."

Emma McClarkin, of the British Beer & Pub Association, said: "Expecting pubs to demand all customers produce photographic identification with names and addresses would be fundamentally inappropriate and completely unacceptable."

A Met spokesman said: "The local advice from one of the Met's licensing teams about this is just that – advice.

"It was well-intentioned and we hope that it is taken in that way.

"Our primary aim is to help keep all Londoners safe and ensure, through engagement and explanation, that the relevant Covid legislation is adhered to."

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