'Shameful' - police release footage of 300 people at illegal rave in Covid hotspot

4 November 2020, 16:53 | Updated: 4 November 2020, 16:54

EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

Watch the shocking helicopter footage released by police of an illegal gathering in Wigan where rave goers flee down a live rail line from officers.

Greater Manchester Police have released shocking helicopter footage of a large illegal gathering at a farm in Wigan at the weekend as officers continue to investigate the organisation of the event and are appealing to the public for information.

The footage, taken on-board the National Police Air Service (NPAS)’s aircraft during the multi-agency response to the incident, shows 300 people gathered on the site near the border of Glazebury, adjacent to a live railway line on Saturday night.

Attendees are seen to make their way on the tracks during the event and at one point disrupt the journey of a passing train.

Police were told about the illegal rave at 8.45pm on Saturday 31 October by the owner of the farm.

A spokesperson said the farmer returned to the 320-acre site to find a large number of people gathered there with music equipment and loud music playing.

This led to police deploying officers from several forces including the Transport Police and Network Rail as well as the police helicopter.

Police blocked access to the site and issued a section 35 dispersal order and the 300 people were set on their way.

GMP said seven police vehicles were damaged and a machete was found at the site.

An investigation is currently ongoing into the organisation of the event and 25 people have been identified for possible further action.

Detectives are appealing to the public with any information to get in touch.

Assistant Chief Constable Nick Bailey said: “It was shameful to see so many in attendance and for groups of attendees to make their way onto the tracks of a live railway and put themselves in further danger. The memory of the illegal events in Carrington and Daisy Nook earlier this year serves as a reminder of the difficulties posed to emergency services in accessing these locations when needed."

Any information about this illegal event should be reported to police on 0161 856 3034 quoting incident number 3231 of 31/10/2020. Details can also be passed anonymously to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.