Thursday, 29 Oct 2020

Local lockdown rules: What you can and can’t do in Liverpool, Hartlepool and Warrington

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Merseyside is now under local lockdown restrictions as cases have drastically risen in the area. Liverpool’s weekly infection rate rose to 258 people per 100,000 on September 28. Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson said he thought the new restrictions were due to an increase in people moving around the city, with schools and students going back to school and people returning to the office.

New rules in Liverpool, Hartlepool, Warrington and Middlesbrough

The first rule imposed on Merseyside is the banning on households mixing.

Health secretary Matt Hancock said today households aren’t allowed to mix in any setting, including pubs, bars and restaurants.

The new rule is in addition to the pre-existing restriction against people meeting in households and private homes and gardens.

The new rules apply to the whole Liverpool City region, including Wirral, Sefton, Knowsley, St Helens and Halton.

Mr Hancock said, however, the new ban does not include meeting other households in parks or outdoor hospitality venues like beer gardens.

The Health Secretary said: “The rules will be as follows, we recommend against all social mixing between people in different households, m 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.”

Mr Hancock also announced today that financial support will be provided to the affected areas after stark calls from local authorities.

He said £7million would be made available to Merseyside.

The Health Secretary also urged residents of the area to avoid travelling unless absolutely necessary.

“Exceptional circumstances”, such as driving to work or school, were cited as acceptable reasons to leave.

The Government is also now advising against care home visits in the area.

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Once again, people will be allowed to visit care homes in the case of exceptional circumstances.

The Government is also telling people to avoid attending sporting events, either professional or amateur ones.

Mr Hancock said he hoped the restrictions would be in place for as little time as possible, but couldn’t promise how long.

As seen in Greater Manchester, restrictions could be in place for months if infection rates don’t start to reduce.

There is also a possibility even tighter restrictions could be brought into the area if things don’t significantly improve.

Metro mayor for the Liverpool City Region Steve Rotheram said although the measures were “a step in the right direction”, he was unsure “whether they are enough”.

He called on the Government to publish scientific evidence and provide “substantial” economic support for businesses in the area, which are already struggling to stay afloat.

But Executive Mayor of Middlesbrough Andy Preston branded the restrictions “unacceptable”.

Mr Preston said communication with the Government had proved futile and the new measures were “based on ignorance” that would “kill viable jobs and damage mental health”.

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