16 September 2020 22:32
Large parts of the North East are set to be subjected to tighter lockdown restrictions that will be announced tomorrow. The fresh coronavirus restrictions are expected to come into force on Friday. An MP present at the meeting told Sky News that the areas affected are likely to be Newcastle, Northumberland, North Tyneside, South Tyneside, Gateshead, County Durham and Sunderland. N Durham MP decries govt's 'shotgun' approach It comes after health minister Nadine Dorries met with 22 MPs from NE England - the same day that the UK recorded its highest number of daily coronavirus infections since May. Measures will include a curfew of 10pm on pubs, restaurants and other licensed venues, as well as banning people from socialising with anyone outside their household, according to the Newcastle Chronicle. Advertisement Other restrictions, which are set to be announced but have not yet been confirmed, include people being told not to travel on holiday with other households and sports fans being advised not to attend games.
The paper added that only essential visitors will be able to visit care homes and, except for essential journeys, public transport use and car-sharing will be discouraged at peak times. Housing secretary Robert Jenrick confirmed the move to impose more restrictions on ITV's Peston on Wednesday evening. Newcastle City Council leader Nick Forbes tweeted: "Some additional, temporary restrictions are being planned to prevent another full lockdown." In a reply to another Twitter user, Mr Forbes added: "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." Up to the 13 September, the two-week infection rate per 100,000 in the areas facing new restrictions, according to Sky News data, are: Sunderland: 155.7 South Tyneside: 155.1 Gateshead: 139.7 Newcastle Upon Tyne: 116.3 North Tyneside: 85 County Durham: 70.2 Northumberland: 47.1 Labour MP for North Durham, Kevan Jones, told Sky News: "It's added to the farcical way the government has handled this. The issue in the North East needs to be addressed as numbers are rising but testing in the North East is a shambles." Mr Jones added that local authorities should be given control of the test and trace service. It becomes the latest area to face more lockdown restrictions in an attempt to get COVID-19 under control, following the announcement earlier on Wednesday that Rhondda Cynon Taf in Wales would face a local lockdown.
FREE now SUBSCRIBE Invalid email Make the most of your money by signing up to our newsletter fornow We will use your email address only for sending you newsletters. Please see our Privacy Notice for details of your data protection rights. The areas expected to be governed by the new restrictions include Newcastle, Northumberland, North Tyneside, South Tyneside, Gateshead, Country Durham and Sunderland. Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick has said the Government will make a full announcement on the matter tomorrow. Trending Mr Jenrick told ITV's Peston on Wednesday: "The number of cases has been rising rapidly in many parts of the country, but in particular in the North East, and so a decision has been made to impose further restrictions there. "And a full announcement will be made tomorrow and so people living in that part of the country should watch out for that. "And the measures will come into play at midnight on Thursday evening. "So, over the course of the day a full briefing will be made available to everybody including the councils and business community." Boris Johnson is set to introduce local lockdown restrictions in the north east A coronavirus testing centre The new rule will come into effect from Friday morning, which could force pubs, restaurants and other licensed premises to close from 10pm each day, as a curfew is introduced. But the hospitality venues will be allowed to reopen, unlike in Bolton where pubs and restaurants are take-away only. Residents of the areas will also be banned from socialising with anyone from a different household. People will also be asked not to visit care homes unless it is essential, not to attend sporting venues and to avoid public transport except for essential journeys. Queues stretch along the pavement at a walk-in Covid-19 testing centre The new measures are expected to come into force after midnight on Friday morning in a bid to curb the dramatic rise in coronavirus cases across the region. It comes after health minister Nadine Dorries met with 22 MPs from north east England earlier today. Seven local authorities have been urging for new restrictions to be introduced as infections begin to steadly rise. Speaking earlier this week, Newcastle City Council leader Nick Forbes said: "There is universal concern from council leaders across our region about the exponential rise in Covid cases over the last week. The Government will make an announcement tomorrow "Unless we get on with this now, we are facing a bigger problem down the line which could end up in a full lockdown. "It is better to try to introduce measures which will prevent that, even though that may mean some additional restrictions over the next few weeks. "We are working with the government on a plan for what those could mean and how we can get those measures in place over the next few weeks to protect our communities and having to go into another prolonged, damaging lockdown." Bolton has been subject to local lockdown restrictions since the end of July, and last week Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced the area was to be subject to tighter restrictions. Coronavirus map live