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Festive revellers party as Christmas season begins despite Omicron Covid fears

Groups of friends were pictured dressed up for a night out after Boris Johnson told people to carry on with their Christmas plans as normal

Revellers out on Friday night in Newcastle

Festive revellers hit pubs and clubs in the UK as the Christmas season begins despite fears of the Omicron Covid variant spreading.

Groups of friends were pictured dressed up for a night out after the PM told people to carry on with their Christmas plans as normal.

Some got into the festive spirit by donning fancy dress – including one who dressed up as a tree and others in Christmas jumpers.

One in Newcastle dressed as an elf as revellers hit the town despite the cold temperatures.

Groups of friends headed out amid confusion over how to behave over the festive season.

Revellers in Newcastle enjoy a night on the town with some in a festive mood
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Image:

North News & Pictures Ltd northnews.co.uk)

UKHSA head Dr Jenny Harries, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “Our behaviours in winter and particularly around Christmas we tend to socialise more so I think all of those will need to be taken into account.”

Asked whether people should be told to work from home in England, as is happening in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, she said: “We’ve seen that not everybody has gone back to work and I’d like to think of it more in a general way, which is if we all decrease our social contacts a little bit, actually that helps to keep the variant at bay.

One dressed as a Christmas tree
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Image:

Jason Brown/LNP)

People enjoying the nightlife as the festive season begins
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Image:

North News & Pictures Ltd northnews.co.uk)

“So I think being careful, not socialising when we don’t particularly need to and particularly going and getting those booster jabs.”

But Boris Johnson has said Christmas should go ahead “as normally as possible” despite widespread concern about the Omicron variant.

Speaking during a visit to Oswestry in North Shrops, the Prime Minister added to the confusion by saying people did not need to cancel parties or nativities.

Groups of friends letting their hair down
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Image:

North News & Pictures Ltd northnews.co.uk)

Glossing over contradictory advice from his own ministers in recent days, he said: “There’s been quite a lot of to-ing and fro-ing, people concerned they need to cancel Christmas parties.

“That’s not right, we’re not saying that… Christmas should go ahead as normally as possible.”

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