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Most fines were issued to young men aged 18 to 24, the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) said.

The data, from between 12 and 25 May, shows a significant reduction in the number of people fined since measures were eased in England two weeks ago.

A total of 841 fixed penalty notices were handed out in England since restrictions were eased on 13 May.

Overall, 15,552 fines have been recorded by police forces in England since the lockdown began in March, according to provisional NPCC figures.

Some 1,395 were issued in Wales.

Among the main reasons for fines, the NPCC listed driving with non-household members, house parties, large gatherings and camping.

The data shows fines were more likely to be issued at weekends, with the NPCC highlighting the recent bank holidays and periods of warmer weather.

It comes as the latest UK-wide figures show another 324 people have died after testing positive for coronavirus in hospitals and the wider community, bringing the total to 38,161.

Some 131,458 people were tested for coronavirus on Thursday – with a further 2,095 positive cases reported.

The government has announced a further easing of lockdown restrictions from Monday, when groups of six people from different households will be able to meet outside in England.

They will be able to meet in gardens and parks as long as households keep two metres apart, but Downing Street said police do not have the power to enter gardens to check numbers.

Similar measures have been announced for Wales from Monday – although people from two households will be able to meet in groups of any size, so long as they stay local. In Scotland, two households can meet outside at a distance from Friday.

The NPCC said there were 1,019 fines issued in England during the latest two-week period – although the figure is likely to be revised upwards as more fines are reported – compared to 4,967 during the previous fortnight.

The highest number of fines issued in England – 178 – came on 12 May, the day before lockdown measures were eased.

Of the 43 regional police forces in England and Wales, London’s Metropolitan Police has recorded the highest number of fines (1,035), followed by North Yorkshire (1,032), and Devon and Cornwall (906).

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