New national coronavirus lockdown 'to be imposed next week'

Reports in the national press suggest a new national coronavirus lockdown is to be imposed next week.

Saturday, 31st October 2020, 7:48 am
Updated Saturday, 31st October 2020, 8:16 am

The BBC, Sky News and The Times are all reporting Prime Minister Boris Johnson will bow to pressure from Government scientists to u-turn on the tier stratagey in favour of a blanket lockdown covering the entire country.

The decision has reportedly been reached after ministers saw data which showed hospitals in parts of the country would be overrun with Covid patients before Christmas.

It is thought the new lockdown will be similar to the one imposed in March with the exception that schools, nurseries and universities will this time remain open.

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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson walks from 10 Downing Street to a meeting with his ministers at the Foreign Office, in London (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, file).

However, all non-essential shops will close with the measures expected to be in place until at least December 1.

Leading scientists asked the Government ti impose a ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown last month but this was resisted by ministers in favour of the current system of regional ‘tiers’.

Tier 2 restrictions were imposed on South Yorkshire just two weeks ago before the region was upgraded to Tier 3 restrictions last week.

The whole of Derbyshire moved into Tier 2 last week while Nottinghamshire moved up to Tier 3 on Friday.

Hospitals in South Yorkshire currently have 700 patients with Covid-19, almost double the number who were being treated at the previous peak in April.

Yesterday, the UK recorded a further 24,405 new coronavirus cases and 274 new deaths.

It is currently estimated that around 100,000 people are catching the virus every day in the UK.

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a digital subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Nancy Fielder, editor.