Nottingham braced for Tier 3 imminently after 'dramatic' Covid patient rise

23 October 2020, 10:28

Nottingham is heading for Tier 3
Nottingham is heading for Tier 3. Picture: PA

Nottingham is braced to enter Tier 3 lockdown restrictions following a “dramatic” rise in coronavirus hospital patients.

Talks between civic leaders for the Midlands city and Westminster are continuing on Friday over moving the hotspot to the “very high” tier, with the city council requesting the move.

The highest level of Boris Johnson’s restrictions bring pub and bar closures, a ban on households mixing in most settings and advice against travel in or out. 

The city, which has the second-highest rates of coronavirus in the country, is expected to be moved to Tier 3 alongside the Nottinghamshire boroughs of Broxtowe, Gedling and Rushcliffe. 

It comes after Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust moved to postpone some non-urgent surgery and appointments until 6 November “following a dramatic increase in the number of patients with Covid-19 in our hospital”. 

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“Over the last few days we have exceeded 200 patients with the virus in the hospital, and every day this is increasing by nearly another full ward of people,” said Tracy Taylor, the Trust’s chief executive. 

Nottinghamshire MPs were invited to a meeting with health minister Nadine Dorrie at 9am on Friday to discuss moving to Tier 3, Nottinghamshire Live reported. It followed several of them saying they were “disappointed” to have been shut out of talks so far. 

Nottingham had a seven-day average of 610.1 Covid-19 cases per 100,000 people in the week to 18 October. This is down from 926.7 in the previous week.

Millions more people will be under tougher coronavirus restrictions in the next 24 hours as the Government increased financial support for businesses and employees affected by the measures.

Greater Manchester moved into the highest alert level, Tier 3, on Friday morning, and Wales will introduce its two-week “firebreak” lockdown at 6pm. 

Coventry, Stoke and Slough will enter Tier 2 on Saturday, while talks between Westminster and civic leaders in Nottingham over possible Tier 3 restrictions are continuing on Friday.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced an emergency multi-billion pound bailout on Thursday aimed at supporting workers and firms through the second coronavirus wave.

The Job Support Scheme, which replaces the current furlough system from November 1, will be made more generous in an effort to persuade firms to keep staff in work.

There will also be grants of up to £2,100 a month available for firms in Tier 2 areas of England, aimed at helping hospitality and leisure venues which have seen takings plummet due to restrictions on households mixing.

The package could cost the Exchequer around £13 billion over six months.