BOOZY Brits are enjoying the first Friday night of freedom since Covid restrictions are lifted as revellers pack out clubs and bars.
Pictures show huge crowds gather for a dance for the first weekend out of the town since or a year and a half.
Punters queued from 9pm to get into Astoria nightclub in Portsmouth as soon as it opened to make the most of the night.
The club was expecting over 2000 people for the first evening of pumping music and dancing since early 2020.
In the first two days of opening this week, punters have consumed 1.5 tonnes of Red Bull, Astoria says.
They assure that every staff member has a Covid test before their shift and the venue has had the most NHS app check ins in the country, with the exception of concerts and sporting events this week, they say.
In Birmingham, girls pose for pictures as thousands of revellers descended onto Broad Street last night as they continued to enjoy their first week of freedom.
The sell-out event ‘Vodbull’ was on at Rosies nightclub which was packed to the rafters with energetic partygoers.
The queue snaked round barriers and at one point it was like a sea of people, much like 2019 New Year’s, the club says.
Most club nights on Friday and Saturday have already been fully booked with ticket sales selling out weeks ago.
And by midnight last Sunday, long queues had started to form outside venues with revellers keen to party away the memories of the past 18 months in lockdown.
The reopening of the country’s 12,000 nightclubs was eagerly awaited by partygoers after dance-floors were shut more than a year and a half ago.
Veteran nightclub-goers grinned as they were finally able to swap the couch and pyjamas for dance-floors and glad rags.
Excited clubbers queued up for more than an hour outside EGG nightclub in North London ahead of its reopening at midnight.
Nightclubber Chloe Waite, 37, said: “It’s a bit like New Year isn’t it? It’s going to be a special night.
“Whether we’ll have more of these in the future, who can say, I wouldn’t like to speculate.
“For me this is something we’re going to remember for a long, long time and we might not get the opportunity for a while.”
Newcastle’s Powerhouse nightclub was one of several venues that hosted midnight “freedom” parties as restrictions ended, along with G-Bar in Liverpool and Little Mix star Jade Thirlwall’s South Shields nightclub, Industry.
Demand was so high for parties in the early hours some clubs were forced to make events ticketed – with many almost sold out before they opened.
Gabriel Wildsmith, 26, a video producer from London, said he had been waiting for an hour to get into EGG.
It comes as a huge boost to the hospitality industry, which has struggled to make a profit with limited capacity allowed indoors due to social distancing regulations.
And Brits will no longer need to check in to venues by scanning a QR code using the Test and Trace app.
However, Boris Johnson has begged the public for a “cautious” end to lockdown tomorrow amid the “extremely contagious Delta variant.”
He said: “We’ve got to do it cautiously. We’ve got to remember that this virus is sadly still out there.
“Cases are rising, we can see the extreme contagiousness of the Delta variant.
“But we have this immense satisfaction that the vaccine programme has very severely weakened the link between infection and hospitalisation, and between infection and serious illness and death.
“So please, please, please be cautious and go forward tomorrow into the next step with all the right prudence and respect for other people.
“And above all, please, please, please, when you’re asked to get that second jab, get the jab, please come forward and do it.”