Grand National: More police for Covid-secure race festival

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The Grand National 2019Image source, Getty Images
Image caption,
Only owners, trainers and staff will be permitted inside Aintree

Police are stepping up patrols around this year's Grand National race festival, which will be held behind closed doors due to Covid restrictions.

Residents close to Aintree have also been warned not to gather in groups larger than six in their gardens during the races.

Only owners, trainers and staff are allowed in for the three-day festival, which begins on Thursday.

Last year's race was cancelled amid the first coronavirus lockdown.

Ch Supt Paul White said: "We know the event is traditionally a huge part of Merseyside's social calendar and attracts large crowds.

"This year's event will be taking place behind closed doors, which is a huge shame, however we are clearly in unprecedented times."

Image source, Getty Images
Image caption,
Police will patrol the streets around the racecourse

He said police had been working closely with organisers and there would be a "proactive and proportionate policing operation".

Ch Supt White also reminded people living nearby that households are not allowed to mix indoors.

Last year Potters Corner won the national in a virtual version of the event.

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