North East faces tighter lockdown rules this week with '10pm curfew for pubs and restaurants'
THE North East faces tighter lockdown rules this week with a 10pm curfew expected for pubs and restaurants.
Newcastle City Council leader Nick Forbes said "additional, temporary" measures are being planned to prevent another full lockdown.
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Mr Forbes said Matt Hancock is likely to make an announcement on Thursday and the new rules will come into force the following day.
Measures would include a 10pm curfew on pubs, restaurants and other licensed premises, Chronicle Live reports.
It also said people will be banned from socialising with anyone outside their household.
Other restrictions it said were due to be announced – but had not yet been confirmed – include people being told not to go on holiday with different households and spectators advised not to attend sporting venues.
It said care home visits will be restricted to essential visitors, and people will be advised to avoid public transport at peak times except for essential journeys, and to avoid car-shares.
The restrictions will reportedly apply to Newcastle, Northumberland, North Tyneside, South Tyneside, Gateshead, County Durham and Sunderland – which have all seen rises in cases, according to the latest weekly rates.
Mr Forbes tweeted: "Some additional, temporary restrictions are being planned to prevent another full lockdown."
One Twitter user asked when the announcement would be made, adding that the "uncertainty creates lots of anxiety for people".
He replied: "We are waiting confirmation from Government on the final version of the regulations; I am expecting an announcement by the Health Secretary at 11am tomorrow."
Chronicle Live said the plan is for measures to come into force just after midnight on Friday.
It comes after Boris Johnson hinted this afternoon at another national lockdown.
The Prime Minister refused to rule out another lockdown but said the Government would do everything possible to prevent national restrictions forcing businesses to close.
Liverpool is one of the latest cities reportedly set for a lockdown and may see pubs and restaurants become takeaways.
The city has seen soaring coronavirus rates, with 106.4 cases per 100,000 people.
Mayor Joe Anderson said today he expects new restrictions to be brought in this week.
The most recent figures show Newcastle to have recorded a sharp increase in its weekly rate, up from 51.2 to 64.1, with 194 new cases in the seven days to September 13.
Local measures in the likes of Greater Manchester and Birmingham have already been put in place in a bid to address rising rates of infection.
The UK had almost 4,000 new cases of coronavirus today and 20 new deaths.
The PM said this afternoon: "I don't want a second national lockdown. I think it would be completely wrong for this country."
He added: "I very much doubt whether the financial consequences would be anything but disastrous. But we have to make sure we defeat the disease that we've set out.
"And so when I see people arguing against the rule of six, or saying the Government is coming in too hard on individual liberties, I sympathise with that but we must beat this disease."
More to follow…
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