Boris Johnson has confirmed that England will plunge into a national lockdown tomorrow, just days after a large majority of the country was placed under Tier 4 restrictions.
The news comes as its revealed that hospital admissions are up by 40% in comparison to the ‘peak’ back in April, with deaths also increasing 20% in the past week.
Speaking in a national address, the Prime Minister admitted that it had become “clear that we need to do more” in the face of the new strain which has been fast-spreading across the country, advising that ‘stay at home’ orders would return from tomorrow.
Schools will also be required to teach remotely during the lockdown, following a bout of criticism from local leaders regarding the decision to keep schools open in Tier 4 areas – despite schools in London closing. Discussing the decision to keep schools open initially, the Prime Minister commented: “we’ve been doing everything in our power to keep schools open because we know how important each day is in education to children’s life choices.”
The new rules will mean that the pubs, restaurants and non-essential shops that were able to remain open under their particular tiers will now be required to close – with a ‘stay at home’ order placed on the general public. It will now only be advised to leave your home for essential purposes, for example exercise, collecting groceries and medicine or attending your place of work if you cannot work from home. The restrictions are set to last until ‘at least mid-February’.
Here are the official rules, as set out by the government:
- You must not leave, or be outside of your home except where necessary
- You may shop for basic necessities, for you or a vulnerable person
- You may go to work, or provide voluntary or charitable services, if you cannot reasonably do so from home
- You may exercise with your household (or support bubble) or one other person, this should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area
- You may seek medical assistance or avoid injury, illness or risk of harm (including domestic abuse)
- Schools must remain closed, except to vulnerable children and key workers’ children
- You must not travel to another area during lockdown
- All non-essential shops must close
- All bars and restaurants must close (except for takeaway and delivery services)