Tue, 13 Oct 2020
New 'local lockdown' rules have been announced but West Berkshire has avoided the tightest restrictions that will be implemented under a three-tier system.
The new measures have been introduced, mainly in northern areas of England, to curb the rising Covid-19 rates.
England is to be divided into “medium”, “high” or “very high” local coronavirus alert areas, Boris Johnson said yesterday (Monday).
It came after the Prime Minister held a telephone conference with Cabinet colleagues yesterday to discuss the situation and ongoing negotiations with local leaders in the North of England – where infection rates are higher.
The county's infection rate stands at 23.77 – the highest it has been since May 28 (21.19) – up from 13.71 the previous week.
But while the cases are on the rise, hospital admissions are down.
In announcing the tier system at the House of Commons, Mr Johnson stressed there are now more people in hospital than when we went into lockdown on March 23.
"I take no pleasure whatsoever in imposing restrictions on businesses – nor do I want to stop people enjoying themselves," he said.
"But we must act to save lives.
"Evidence shows that our actions in changing our behavior are saving lives.
"Left unchecked, each person with the virus would infect an average of 2.7 and 3 others.
"If we were to let the virus rip then the bleak mathematics dictate we suffer not only an intolerable death toll, we would put such a huge strain on our NHS that our doctors and nurses would be unable to devote themselves to other treatments.
"The weeks and months ahead will continue to be difficult and will test the mettle of the country. But I have no doubt we will succeed."
The three tiers announced yesterday represent an advancing scale of local restrictions.
Tier one restrictions – or the medium Covid-19 alert level – are the baseline restrictions in place across England, including a 10pm hospitality curfew and a ban on most gatherings of more than six people.
Tier two restrictions are expected to be similar to rules currently in place in Middlesbrough and parts of the North East, where indoor mixing of households is not allowed. Parts of Nottinghamshire, and East and West Cheshire are among the areas deemed to be at 'high' alert level (scroll down for the full list).
Two households may be allowed to meet in a private garden, as long as the rule of six and social distancing are followed.
In Liverpool, pubs and bars, betting shops, casinos, and gyms are to close under the third “very high” tier restrictions from tomorrow (Wednesday), while reports also suggest people will have to avoid all non-essential travel and to not travel between areas.
Areas with a 'high' level of Covid alert are:
Cheshire West and Chester
High Peak, Derbyshire (parts of)
Blackburn with Darwen
Redcar and Cleveland
Areas with a 'very high' Covid alert level are: