All of Lancashire is to move into tier-three coronavirus restrictions.Advertisement
Council leaders have been locked in negotiations with central government since Friday (9 October) when the move to the new three-tiers started to become apparent.
Local Democracy Reporter, covering Lancashire County Council, Paul Faulkner confirmed a deal had been done – and Lancashire had secured £42million of support for businesses and communities as and when it moved into the new tier-three restrictions.
Preston and Lancashire were placed into tier-two, under the government’s new Local COVID alert levels system on Wednesday (14 October).
The upgraded restrictions are due to apply from 00.01 on Saturday (17 October).
It’s understood gyms and leisure centres in Preston, and Lancashire, will be allowed to remain open – a key difference to the tier-three restrictions enforced in the Liverpool region.
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The government gives discretion on the closure of non-food pubs and bars, leisure industries and tourist attractions under the tier-three restrictions.
Tighter restrictions on stopping household mixing, including banning households from mixing in private gardens, come in as part of the tier-three measures.
County councillor leader Geoff Driver earlier told BBC Lancashire there ‘was a good deal on the table’ for the county.
There had been disagreements between council leaders in Lancashire about the terms of the deal, with Preston City Council’s leader councillor Matthew Brown calling for a national ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown and also saying Lancashire should stand with Greater Manchester’s Mayor Andy Burnham who has said he will defy any attempt to move his region into tier-three.
Councillor Brown has continued to voice his disappointment about the deal.
Health secretary Matt Hancock said: “An unrelenting rise in cases in Lancashire means we must act now, and we have worked intensively with local leaders to agree on additional restrictions.
“I know how heavy these additional challenges will weigh on everyday life for the people of Lancashire – but they are critical in bringing this virus under control.
“Without them, we risk the health of your loved ones, your most vulnerable, and your local NHS services. Now is the time to play your part, and we will make sure you are supported.”
Here are the full tier-three restrictions:
Preston, and many other areas of Lancashire, have some of the highest Covid-19 infection rates in England.
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What do you think about the decision to move to tier-three? Let us know your views in the comments below