Hampshire has seen a dramatic drop in the number of fines issued for people breaking lockdown restrictions.

As previously reported by the Gazette, 103 people had been issued fines by police in the county between March 27 and April 13 for alleged breaches of the new lockdown laws.

The two weeks after that - between April 13 and April 27 - saw a further 94 fines handed out. This brought the total to 197.

Two weeks after that saw another decrease, with just 47 fines issued between April 27 and May 11 for a total overall of 244.

That trend has once again continued, as just 17 fines were handed out between May 11 and May 25, for a total of 261.

A Hampshire Constabulary spokesperson, said: “While certain restrictions have been lifted and we can spend more time enjoying the warm weather, we still need to work together to prevent the spread of infection.

“Our approach of engaging, explaining and encouraging continues to be effective, and the public response has been tremendous.

“We have needed to issue fewer fines and most people my officers speak to understand why they have been approached.

“It is important to remember that we don’t enforce social distancing, the wearing of masks or avoiding public transport.

“However, we will continue to take action against those engaging in activities that are not lawful – such as gathering in groups of more than six people or staying overnight at properties which are not their main residence.

“We are extremely grateful for everyone’s patience during this incredibly challenging time

“We know it’s not easy, but we must stay focused on the measures we are all taking to save lives.”

Police now have the power to issue £100 fines for anyone caught breaching lockdown rules.