POLICE have signalled a crackdown on anyone flouting the UK Government’s coronavirus lockdown restrictions over this Easter weekend.

It comes after the Manchester force had to intervene last weekend to break up some 660 parties that included fireworks, DJs and bouncy castles.

Nick Adderley, the Northamptonshire Police Chief Constable, said the public’s grace period on flouting the law was over, warning that if things did not improve, then officers could set up roadblocks to ask people where they were going.

"This is about reasonableness and if people are not reasonable in terms of the journeys and the trips they are taking, they are going to fall foul of the law.”

Mr Adderley even suggested officers would be “checking the items in baskets and trolleys to see whether it's a legitimate, necessary item”. But he later backtracked on this after Priti Patel, the Home Secretary, intervened to insist checking people’s supermarket trolleys was “not appropriate”.

At the daily Downing St briefing, Dominic Raab urged people to “think very long and hard” about observing the guidance. Last night, he took part in the nightly “clap for carers”.

The Foreign Secretary’s appeal came as the Government launched a social media campaign urging people to stay at home over the Easter weekend.

Meanwhile, Downing St announced the Prime Minister had been “moved this evening from intensive care back to the ward, where he will receive close monitoring during the early phase of his recovery”. It added: “He is in extremely good spirits.”