A man who was fined for having three friends in his garden on his birthday is appealing for his money back after news of the alleged Downing Street parties last year.
Kieron McArdle, 50, invited friends to sit with him outside in his garden on his birthday on 19 March 2021.
Kieron claims the lockdown was affecting his mental health and inviting three friends round was his way to help deal with the loneliness.
He was fined £100 and paid, and even admitted what he did was wrong.
He’s now furious after seeing the leaked emails inviting Downing Street members to a drinks party during lockdown last year.
Kieron is now demanding the government refund him, as well as anyone else who was fined during lockdown.
“There’s no argument that I broke the rules but after seeing more and more stuff coming out, it has infuriated me,” he told Jam Press.
“These people should be held to account and I firmly believe anyone who was fined should be offered a refund or the money donated to charity.
“It feels so unfair that it was one rule for them and another for us.”
Kieron’s friends arrived at 2pm and didn’t enter the house even to use the toilet, but the police arrived at Kieron’s door only one hour later.
Kieron said: “One of my friends recognised that my mental health wasn’t great and it was my birthday.
“I couldn’t go the gym and my children live with their mother and couldn’t come over as they are older and it would have been a mixed household.
“For a couple of weeks, Zoom calls were fine but in the second lockdown last year, I felt my mental health deteriorating.
“We knew it wasn’t in the rules but it wasn’t 40 or 50 people and my friends didn’t even go inside to use the toilet.
“They [the police] told us we were breaking the rules, cautioned us, read us our rights, took our details and copies of our ID, then told us we would get a fine in the post.”
Kieron said the letter and fine arrived a few weeks later.
He’s now contacted his local MP to find out if the fine can be overturned.
“I think I should have a refund and these people should be fined in the same way everyone else has been fined,” he said.
“I’m happy to give that money to charity because I did do wrong but I don’t think it should be going to a government who totally disregarded the rules themselves.”