Matt Hancock: Parts of south to enter Tier 4 on Boxing Day
Matt Hancock said more of the east and south east of England will enter the toughest Tier 4 lockdown on Boxing Day while several other cities will be moved into Tier 3 coronavirus restrictions. The very high alert means Brits cannot meet indoors or outdoors with anyone outside of their home or support bubble. The old tiering system is not enough to control the new strain of the virus, the Health Secretary said.
He said: “Bristol, Somerset, North Somerset, Swindon, the Isle of White, New Forest and Northamptonshire as well as Cheshire and Warrington Tier 3.”
“And I’m afraid that Cornwall and Herefordshire have seen sharply rising rates and need to be escalated to Tier 2.”
He added: “We know that the three-tiered system worked to control the old variant and is working now in large parts of the country especially in northern England.
“But we also know that Tier 3 is not enough to control the new variant. This is not our hypothesis, it is a fact and we have seen it on the ground.
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“We’ve seen case rates rise in some of the places close to where the current Tier 4 restrictions are in places like East Anglia where we are seeing a significant number of the new variant and we’ve seen case rates rise sharply.
“It is, therefore, necessary to put more of the East and South East of England into Tier 4.
“We’re also taking action in parts of the South West where there are some early signs of the new variant and where cases are rising.”
He went on to say that the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine has now submitted full data to the regulator for approval.
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The Cabinet minister continued: “Amid all this difficulty, the great hope for 2021 is of course the vaccine.
“The vaccine is our route out of all this and however tough this Christmas and this winter is going to be, we know that the transforming force of science is helping to find a way through.
“I’m delighted to be able to tell you that the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine developed here in the UK has submitted its full data package to the MHRA for approval.
“This is the next step towards a decision on the deployment of the vaccine which is already being manufactured, including here in the UK.”
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Moving into Tier 3
- Somerset including the North Somerset council area
- Isle of Wight
- New Forest
Moving into Tier 4
- Those parts of Essex not yet in Tier 4
- Waverley in Surrey
- Hampshire including Portsmouth and Southampton but with the exception of the New Forest
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