Nick Abbot 12am - 1am
New lockdown rules for Liverpool, Warrington, Hartlepool and Middlesbrough
1 October 2020, 10:40 | Updated: 1 October 2020, 16:58
Local lockdown measures have been tightened on social mixing in Liverpool, Warrington, Hartlepool and Middlesbrough to help bring down the rapidly spiralling cases of Covid-19.
Announcing the latest raft of measures in the Commons, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said although he understood this was frustrating, they were needed in the fight against Covid-19.
Mr Hancock also issued a cautious note of optimism citing a new study that he said showed the national effort “may be starting to work”.
The latest measures include:
People are recommended against social mixing between households.
People from different households may only mix in outdoor settings.
Those living in those areas are advised against "all but essential travel", such as to work and school.
Visits to care homes only made in "exceptional circumstances"
Advice not to attend professional or amateur sporting events as spectators
In a statement, Health Secretary Matt Hancock told the Commons: "Earlier this week we brought in further measures in the North-East, however in parts of Teesside and the North-West of England cases continue to rise fast.
"In Liverpool, the number of cases is 268 per 100,000 population, so together we need to act. Working with council leaders and the mayors, I'm today extending these measures that have been in the North East since the start of this week to the Liverpool City Region, Warrington, Hartlepool and Middlesbrough.
"We will provide £7 million to local authorities in these areas to support them with their vital work."
Matt Hancock said the rules would be the same as those announced earlier in the week for the North East.
He told the Commons: "We recommend against all social-mixing between people in different households.
"We will bring in regulations, as we have in the North East, to prevent in law social mixing between people in different households in all settings except outdoor public spaces like parks and outdoor hospitality.
"We also recommend that people should not attend professional or amateur sporting events as spectators in the areas that are affected.
"We recommend that people only visit care homes in exceptional circumstances and there will be guidance against all but essential travel. Essential travel, of course, includes going to work or school."
Mr Hancock added he would not allow the virus to "let rip" across the country.
He said: "It is critical that the whole country acts together now to control the spread of this virus, so please for your loved ones, for your community, and for your country - follow the rules and do your bit to keep this virus under control.
"By its nature, this virus spreads through social contact and so it's had a terrible impact on the hospitality sector, who in good times exist to encourage that very social contact that we all enjoy.
More to follow...