YouTube vlogger, 28, fined three times for breaching lockdown to travel to cities to film is refusing to pay because he says his work is ‘essential’
- Marti Blagborough made trips to Lincoln despite living 70 miles away in Leeds
- Lincolnshire Police slapped him and a fellow vlogger with fines worth £200
- He’s already challenging fines he got for similar trips to Sheffield & Scarborough
A YouTube vlogger who was fined three times for breaching lockdown to travel to cities to film is refusing to pay up, claiming the work he does is essential.
Marti Blagborough said his trips to a police station and prison in Lincoln on Monday were ‘essential’ despite living more than 70 miles away in Leeds, West Yorks.
The father-of-three said he made his living from filming videos and selling them on to other companies as part of his role at Pinac Media UK Ltd, which he set up last year.
However, Lincolnshire Police disagreed and have slapped the 28-year-old and a fellow vlogger with £200 fines.
Marti Blagborough said his trips to a police station and prison in Lincoln on Monday were ‘essential’ despite living more than 70 miles away in Leeds, West Yorks
Marti said: ‘We came into contact with one of the officers while we were at the police station.
‘They asked us what we were doing and they spoke about Covid and I explained that I’m a director of a limited company.
‘This is what I do, this is my job – and they’re fine about it and left us.
‘We headed over to HMP Lincoln and we were doing our videos there and then one of the same officers came back with three of his colleagues.
‘And by this time he was happy to give us a Covid fine. It was kind of baffling.
‘From the moment they got out of the car, just by their demeanour and the attitude, I knew it wasn’t going to end well, I knew something was going to happen – I just wasn’t sure what.’
Marti, who has 25,000 followers on YouTube, frequently films ‘auditing’ videos in which he records government and military buildings to test his rights to film in certain places.
Officers issued him with a £200 as they did not deem his travel to the city essential.
Marti, from Farnley, Leeds, is already contesting two other fines issued to him in Sheffield and Scarborough for similar trips.
He added: ‘This is what I do for a living – it is essential for me to travel from work, because I cannot do these videos in my home. It’s obviously not possible.
‘I think it’s super important because over the years a lot of our rights have been eroded by new legislation, and I just feel you have to stand for your rights because if you don’t use them, you’re probably going to lose them.
‘Taking videos and pictures is a massive part of a lot of people’s jobs and I think it’d be nice to get to a point where people no longer get hassled for doing their job and doing something they’re legally entitled to do.
The father-of-three, pictured, said he made his living from filming videos and selling them on to other companies as part of his role at Pinac Media UK Ltd, which he set up last year
‘I’m more than confident that I’ll be able to win them because at the end of the day it is my job and there’s no argument about that.’
A spokesman for Lincolnshire Police said two men were handed fixed penalty notices for breaching Covid regulations.
The spokesman said: ‘The two men, aged 28 and 44, from the Leeds area had travelled to Lincolnshire and were seen taking videos outside South Park Police Station and Lincoln Prison on February 15.
‘The men, claiming to be ‘vloggers’, visited South Park Police Station at around midday before leaving the location.
‘We then received a report of the same men filming outside HMP Lincoln Prison soon after. Our officers attended and both men were issued with a £200 fine.’
Lincolnshire Police’s Chief Inspector Andy Morrice said: ‘The majority of the public have worked with us and I thank them for that.
‘With a virus spreading so rapidly through contact with others we should all be asking ourselves whether our reason to leave home is truly essential.
‘In this case travelling was not deemed essential.
‘There is a real risk that our health service could be overwhelmed and people – our friends and family – could die needlessly from this virus.
‘Those personal decisions are critical.’