Rita Ora says she's "sorry" and "embarrassed" for hosting an indoor birthday party for herself amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The "I Will Never Let You Down" singer turned 30 last week and marked the occasion with what she dubbed a "small gathering with some friends" at a London restaurant. Photos in media outlets showed celebrities, including model Cara Delevingne, making their way to the Saturday event. Thirty people reportedly attended.
England is currently in a monthlong lockdown that began Nov. 5, with nonessential businesses closed and people allowed to leave their homes only for work and other necessities. The lockdown is scheduled to be lifted this week.
In a Monday Instagram post, the British performer called her birthday festivities a "spur of the moment decision made with the misguided view that we were coming out of lockdown and this would be OK."
"I'm deeply sorry for breaking the rules and in turn understand that this puts people at risk," Ora wrote to her more than 16 million followers.
"This was a serious and inexcusable error of judgement," she said. "I feel particularly embarrassed knowing first-hand how hard people have worked to combat this terrible illness and being fully aware of the sacrifices that people and businesses have made to help keep us all safe."
More than 1.6 million coronavirus infections have been reported in the United Kingdom since the pandemic began, according to data from Johns Hopkins University, and more than 58,000 people have died.
Ora isn't the only entertainer to face backlash in recent days for holding a large gathering despite COVID-19-related restrictions.
Rapper Cardi B took to Twitter on Sunday to apologize after saying she played host to 25 adults and 12 children for a Thanksgiving celebration.
The "Money" rapper wrote:
Sorry my bad wasn’t trying to make nobody feel bad.I just had my family in my home for the first time and it felt so good & uplifted me .I spent soo much money getting every1 tested but it felt worth it.I wasnt trying to offend no1. https://t.co/gjGo1JAvnY— iamcardib (@iamcardib) November 29, 2020