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Revellers who attended an unlicensed event at All Saints Church in East Horndon caused damages to the 500-year-old building estimates in more than £1,000. The event spiralled out of control when police officers who were deployed to the site were attacked with objects that were pelted toward them and threatened.
Three attendees were arrested on suspicion of public order and drug offences.
Footage uploaded to social media shows revellers who appear intoxicated trying to block a door as police try to access the venue.
Members of the conservation organisation that supports All Saints Church said they were “devastated” by the destruction caused to the historic building.
A fundraising page was set up to help with the repairs and cleanup of the church with a goal of £2,000.
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A description on the page reads: “The much loved Tudor church of All Saints East Horndon was sadly used for an illegal rave on New Year’s Eve.
“Essex Police made arrests and seized equipment, but now a massive clean up is required after hundreds of revellers trashed the place and caused damage to the building.”
Chief inspector Melton condemned those attending parties as coronavirus figures continue to rise, labelling revellers a “reckless minority”.
He said: “It is the reckless minority of people who organise and attend unauthorised events of this kind that risk spreading Covid-19 and jeopardising the efforts of the majority of people who are doing the right thing.
“Tragically there are people dying or becoming seriously ill because of this awful virus and we all have a responsibility for doing all we can to protect each other.”
In a separate incident, a woman has been fined £10,000 for hosting a New Year’s Eve party.
The event, which took place on Bury Road, Sewardstonebury, was attended by around 100 people.
At total of 25 fixed penalty notices were issued on the night as police dispersed the crowds.
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A video allegedly taken at the £4million luxury home showed people dancing inside a room.
A DJ and a fire dancer were allegedly hired for the event as a waiter served guests drinks.
A plastic sheet, balloons and sparklers were placed over the gates in a potential attempt to prevent passersby looking into the property.
Police arrived on scene and dispersed the crowds in the early hours of New Year’s Day.
The person who organised the event was handed a £10,000 fixed penalty notice by Essex Police under the current Tier 4 coronavirus regulations.
The house was swept and sound equipment was seized following what police described as a “large, unauthorised gathering”.
Neighbours believe new tenants moved into the property around a month ago, according to the Mirror.
A neighbour told the news outlet: “We saw loads of police arrive in the early hours. I thought at first that there might have been a murder rather than a party.
“I know the house had been up for rent because there were signs outside and I think new tenants moved in around a month ago because I saw people coming and going.”
Following the gathering, red party cups and bottles were spotted scattered across the garden and on the driveway.
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