A JOURNALIST said it is “insulting” a beach was so busy while she was unable to visit family to celebrate a Muslim festival due to a local lockdown.

Writer and Twitter user @a_leesha1 posted a photo which showed Brighton beach swarming with people on Friday on her Twitter page.

Friday was the hottest day of the year so far in the UK and saw thousands head to beaches along the south coast as temperatures rose, with the mercury hitting 37.8C at Heathrow in London.

The Muslim 22-year-old wrote on Twitter: “This was Brighton beach today, but I wasn’t allowed to see my grandparents in Bradford for Eid al-Adha. Pathetic and insulting.”

Aleesha, who has written for CNN International and gal-dem magazine, went on to criticise the Government for announcing new local lockdown measures a few hours before Eid al-Adha, a holy Islamic festival celebrated by Muslims worldwide on July 31.

The Argus: Photos by Simon DackPhotos by Simon Dack

She wrote: “It’s not comparable to Easter. We were all under lockdown then. The Government announced this measure a few hours before Eid. People made plans.

“There’s no data on the virus being caught specifically through visiting houses. It’s clearly flawed because it’s not a full local lockdown like Leicester – I can’t see my grandparents in their house but can come in contact with random people in pubs and restaurants and can see my family in those enclosed spaces?”

“The safety of myself and my family is paramount.”

The Government announced new local lockdown measures in parts of the north of England late on Thursday night.

Just after 9.15pm, Health Secretary Matt Hancock wrote on Twitter that “immediate action” was needed due to “an increasing rate of transmission” in Greater Manchester, parts of West Yorkshire and East Lancashire.

He wrote: “From midnight tonight, people from different households will not be allowed to meet each other indoors in these areas.

The Argus:

"We take this action with a heavy heart, but we can see increasing rates of Covid across Europe and are determined to do whatever is necessary to keep people safe.”

The Health Secretary’s announcement sparked outrage among British Muslims, with many slamming the measure on social media.

One Twitter user wrote: "New lockdown measures for Greater Manchester the day before Eid? I smell Islamaphobia."

Another wrote: "Answer this honestly. Would they have done this at 9pm on Christmas Eve?"

Aleesha added in another Twitter post: "Just to be clear: The vast majority of these Northern areas have a significant Muslim population.

"The Government knew exactly what it was doing when it announced these local lockdown measures a few hours before Eid al-Adha."

The Department of Health and Social Care said: “We all want life to get back to normal, to see friends, family and share special moments again, but we all have to play our part to prevent the spread of coronavirus in our communities once more.

"Everyone should be able to celebrate religious festivals and Eid-al-Adha is no exception. But we must ensure we celebrate safely and take extra precautions.”