17 December 2020 20:31

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WIRRAL'S council has said news that the borough is to stay in Tier 2 coronavirus restrictions is "the right decision". Health secretary Matt Hancock announced this morning that the borough - along with the other Liverpool City Region authorities - should remain in measures. This means that while the alert level in the region remains 'high', there is not a requirement for hospitality businesses such as restaurants and pubs that serve substantial meals to close their doors again at this stage. Related link: -find-whether-still-tier-2-today/ Wirral Council leader, Cllr Janette Williamson, said: "Keeping Wirral and the other Liverpool City Region authorities under Tier 2 restrictions is the right decision and vindication of the efforts that people and businesses, in partnership with authorities, in our area have made over the last few weeks to tackle what was a worryingly high level of infection. "However, while we will continue to enjoy the benefits that come with Tier 2 status, it is not a time for any complacency.

"Over recent days our rates have been edging up ever so slightly, so we need to keep control of that and keep doing the basics right to limit the potential for spreading the virus. "We do not want to go back into Tier 3 – not now, not in the new year. ST HELENS will remain in Tier 2 for at least another two weeks following a government review. The Liverpool City Region, which St Helens is a part of, has been under Tier 2 restrictions since the national lockdown lifted on December 2. Prior to the lockdown, the region became the first area in England to be placed in Tier 3 – the highest alert level of the government's tiered system.

READ> St Helens Council seals 20-year regeneration deal with English Cities Fund Declining infection rates and hospital admissions across the region meant it was able to move into the middle tier of the regional tier system. Just before noon today, Health Secretary Matt Hancock made a statement where he announced the new allocations. For St Helens and the Liverpool City Region, there is no change, which is what was expected to happen given our current standing. While infection rates and hospital admissions continue to fall across the region, it was widely believed they are still too high to enable a move to Tier 1. Despite falling rates in four out of the five boroughs in the city region, the weekly infection rate across the region as whole increased from 87.9 cases per 100,000 people to 88.9, in the week ending December 10. More recent data shows that, in the seven days up to December 12, St Helens' infection rate was 119.1, per 100,000 people. That is the second highest seven-day infection rate in the city region, behind Halton. You can attend places of worship for a service, although you are not allowed to socialise with anyone outside of your household or support bubble. Pubs, bars and restaurants will remain closed, with the exemption of those that serve "substantial meals". Shops will also remain open, although a number of high profile retailers have announced that they will not be opening on Boxing Day to allow staff to take a well-earned break. You can continue to travel to venues that are open, or for reasons such as work or education, but you should reduce the number of journeys you make wherever possible. If you live in a Tier 2 area, you must continue to follow Tier 2 rules when you travel to a Tier 1 area. You should avoid travel to or overnight stays in Tier 3 areas other than where necessary. The full government guidance for Tier 2 can be found here. The next tier review is due to be completed by December 30. Before that takes place, however, restrictions are set to eased between December 23 to 27 December. During those five days of Christmas, households will be allowed to form a 'Christmas bubble' composed of people from no more than three households. However, Boris Johnson advised the public on Wednesday to minimise contacts before seeing their loved ones at Christmas. The Prime Minister also urged the public to avoid travelling from high prevalence areas to ones that are not so badly affected. Addressing the nation in Downing Street, Mr Johnson said the current picture was "more challenging than we hoped when we first set the rules." Under the rules, you can meet your Christmas bubble in private homes or in your garden, places of worship, or public outdoor spaces. You cannot meet your Christmas bubble in any other indoor setting, such as a pub, hotel, shop, theatre, or restaurant. In these settings, rules on who you can and cannot meet depend on your tier. If you do decide to form a Christmas bubble, you should stop any unnecessary social contact outside your household as soon as possible and for at least five days before meeting your Christmas bubble. The Prime Minister also said people should "think carefully" about avoiding crowds in the Boxing Day sales, and said no-one should be gathering in large groups to see in the New Year. From 28, December, you must follow the guidance for the tier in your area.. For more details on making a Christmas Bubble, click here.