Pubs and beer gardens were packed with the drink flowing as Brits enjoyed their first Saturday out since lockdown restrictions were eased in England.
Drinkers started with pub gardens packed across the country and an estimated six million pints drunk in one day.
Lockdown rules eased in England on April 12 allowing pubs to reopen and people to meet in groups of six outside. Some pubs had ordered extra barrels and arranged more staff ahead of the weekend.
For many it was the first weekend to have a pint with friends since Christmas and they took full advantage as they went out in force.
People met up with friends and had a drink with restrictions eased in Leeds
(Image: NB PRESS LTD)
High Streets were also busy as shoppers headed out with an estimated £1.6bn spent – and although a lot it is still down on the £2bn typically splashed out before the pandemic.
Queues could be seen across Regent Street in London with the long wait at an end. It was the same story elsewhere with shops full and many people hunting for bargains.
In Manchester there were queues to get a drink at the busy Deansgate Locks pub gardens.
Drinkers enjoyed the sunshine in Liverpool
Pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes in England will be able to open indoors on May 17 if the roadmap continues
While in other cities around the country it was a similar story with people in high spirits.
The warmer weather also helped in many areas as temperatures reached 16C in some areas although there was some rain in the North West. Into Saturday evening and it remained mild, encouraging people to go for one more drink.
The forecast for the coming days is also good with a peak of 18C expected.
The mood was generally good with people enjoying a drink in the sun while occasional scuffles did break out.
People made the most of the good weather to meet up with friends
(Image: Newcastle Chronicle)
Lockdown rules eased on April 12 in England
Police have warned people that they need to stick to social distancing rules and they need to be seated at pubs. When they leaves their seats they are required to wear a mask.
There are currently 50,000 pubs and restaurants serving alcohol, including the 10,000 locations serving takeaways.
Some pubs with large outdoor areas have been doing better than ever with the surge in demand and takings have been ten times higher than normal.
Emma McClarkin, chief executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, said: “Pubs and pub-goers are looking forward to the first weekend drinks in months.
"We’re beginning to rebuild our businesses and reconnect our communities.”
Pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes will be able to open indoors on May 17 if the UK continues on schedule with its roadmap out of lockdown.