Punters on Scilly Isles toast New Year in only pubs still open in Britain

LUCKY revellers in Britain’s only Tier 1 area toasted the New Year in pubs — but still had to go home before midnight.

Scilly Isles locals were the sole Brits able to hit bars for celebrations.

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Many flocked to the Mermaid Inn pub on the island of St Mary’s, where punters feasted on a three-course meal with prosecco.

While the rest of Britain made do with their living room sofas, customers had ham hock terrine with pickled mushrooms, rump steak and chips, followed by Baileys and Oreo brownies.

And at the Fraggle Rock boozer on Bryher — one of the smaller islands of Scilly and accessible only by boat — landlord Chris Hopkins, 65, and wife Sue, 61 rustled up a tasty chilli con carne.

Their festivities kicked off with an NHS charity bingo.

Chris said: “It’s strange thinking we’re one of the few pubs in England able to celebrate the New Year.”

Tier 1 rules meant pubs had to stop serving alcohol by 10pm, but revellers had one hour to drink up.

Police were ready to deal with any outsiders from the mainland trying to sneak in.

Scilly’s Supt Jo Arundale, said: “We put into place special plans.

"It is illegal to leave Tier 4 areas to travel to the island, so those who attempted to could expect the real prospect of being turned away and fined.”

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