Lancashire in Tier 3 lockdown: What people can and can't do - and what it means for Sheffield
A deal has reportedly been struck for Lancashire to enter Tier 3 lockdown, as Sheffield waits to see if it will be placed under tighter restrictions.
An agreement has been reached to move the whole county into the ‘very high’ alert level, meaning pubs and bars not serving meals would be forced to close, according to a report in the Lancashire Post.
If confirmed it would be only the second part of the country after Liverpool to be placed in the highest Covid-19 lockdown level.
From Saturday, people in the north west county will be banned from socialising with anybody they do not live with in any indoor setting or private garden, as well as in most outdoor hospitality venues.
All pubs and bars must close unless they are serving substantial meals, and casinos, bingo halls, bookmakers, betting shops, soft play areas and adult gaming centres will be forced to shut.
Car boot sales will also be banned.
Sheffield’s weekly infection rate as of Thursday evening is 444.2, which is down slightly from 458.2 on Wednesday but up from 385.7 the previous week. It is the 10th highest of any local authority in England.
Sheffield’s director of public health, Greg Fell, has already warned it is a matter of ‘when, not if’ the city is placed into Tier 3, meaning that as well as pubs and bars closing, households would be banned from mixing in private gardens and outdoors at most hospitality venues, and people would be advised to avoid travelling outside the ‘high alert’ area other than for things like work, education and caring responsibilities.
Regional leaders in Lancashire have secured a £42 million financial support package for business, the care sector and schools, the Lancashire Post reports, which is more than the £12m initially offered but short of the £58.2m they were seeking.
Tier 3 measures are also being considered for Manchester, with foreign secretary Dominic Raab accusing Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham of ‘trying to hold the Government over a barrel over money and politics’ by resisting the move.
Mr Burnham responded by saying: “It’s not about what we want for ourselves, Dominic Raab. It’s about what we want for low-paid and self-employed people everywhere: fairness.”
In Manchester, the latest Covid-19 infection rate is 473.0 cases per 100,000 people in the seven days to October 11, down from 558.0 the previous week.
In Liverpool City Region, the latest infection rate is 676.6, up from 580.1 the week before.
Sheffield City Region mayor Dan Jarvis has said he supported Sheffield being placed in Tier 2 lockdown but that for those restrictions to work they ‘must go hand in hand with improvements in their support’ from central government.
Some pubs landlords in Sheffield have warned their businesses are not viable under Tier 2 restrictions, which prevent different households from mixing indoors, and they would actually prefer a Tier 3 lockdown.
It is understood that the deal for Lancashire to enter Tier 3 lockdown will be announced today by the Government and will include £30m to help with the local testing, tracing and isolation, among other measures, on top of the £12m initially promised to local councils.