Liverpool will move up a tier from December 31.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced today that a number of areas across England would be moving into tiers with stricter restrictions, including Liverpool, which will be returning to the second highest level of restrictions, Tier 3.
Despite the mass testing pilot scheme which took place in Liverpool and a reduction in coronavirus cases last month, the city is returning to Tier 3, the same tier that was imposed for a number of weeks before the national lockdown began.
Tiers were determined based on a multitude of factors, including virus rates, rates of hospitalisation, the rate of growth, and more. Liverpool, alongside areas in the south-west as well as York and North Yorkshire, will be moving into Tier 3 from 00.01 GMT tomorrow (December 31). However, Warrington, Cheshire and Lancashire will all be moving to Tier 4.
Speaking in the House of Commons this afternoon, the Health Secretary said it was “absolutely necessary” that these changes were implemented, adding: “Today is a day really of mixed emotions. The joy of the vaccine, the sorrow of deaths and suffering this virus has caused. The determination we must stick at it.”
Attempting the soften the blow to millions this afternoon, the Health Secretary said he believes “there will be brighter future ahead”, and that the vaccine could “save us”.
The Shadow Health Secretary added that “the virus is out of control” and that “In England, there are now more patients in hospital. Hospitals are close to or at surge capacity.”
The news comes as health regulators approved the second coronavirus vaccine, produced by the University of Oxford and AstraZeneca, which is expected to be rolled out from next week.
“So, remind me, what does this mean we’re allowed to do?”
- No mixing with other households indoors (apart from support bubbles).
- You can meet with up to six people in some outdoor spaces, e.g. parks.
- Pubs and restaurants will be permitted to offer takeaway and delivery only.
- Outdoor grassroots sport and exercise classes are allowed.
- Gyms are allowed to reopen, regardless of tier (though indoor classes or group activities can’t go ahead).
- Salons (hairdressers, tattoo studios, etc) will be open.
- Non-essential shops will reopen all over the country.
- Weddings can go ahead with up to 15 guests, with no reception. Funerals can go ahead with up to 30 guests.
- You should avoid travelling out of the area, except for things like work, education and medical visits.