Matt Hancock has announced which areas of England will fall under the revised three-tier system that will replace the current national lockdown when it ends on 2 December.
The Health Secretary made the announcement in Parliament today (26 November) alongside a written ministerial statement, in which he revealed the tiers into which local authorities in England will be placed until at least mid-December.
Ahead of the announcement, reports suggested very few areas would be placed into Tier 1, with “most” of the country falling under the second category.
Worse still, much of the country’s regions will see the strongest, Tier 3 restrictions imposed against them.
Here is everything you need to know.
What do the new tiers look like?
Areas placed into Tier 1 will be subject to the 10pm pub curfew, though customers will be given an extra hour to finish their food and drinks; last orders must still be called at 10pm.
In Tier 2, pubs will only be able to serve alcohol as part of a “substantial meal”, and customers must stay within their household groups. This rule previously only applied in Tier 3.
Outside drinkers may also have to have a meal under the changes, and households will only be allowed to mix outdoors.
As for the highest level, pubs, bars and restaurants in Tier 3 will have to close and will only be allowed to serve alcohol or meals as takeaway or delivery only. Households and bubbles will also not be allowed to mix indoors or outdoors until the Christmas break.
Indoor entertainment, hotels and other accommodation will also have to close in Tier 3 areas – cinemas will only be allowed to reopen for areas in Tier 1 and 2, and outdoor and indoor sports venues will only be able to welcome a “limited number” of spectators to events in the first two tiers.
Non-essential shops will likely stay open in all three tiers, along with hairdressers and gyms.
Areas placed in Tier 3 will be offered support from NHS Test and Trace and the Armed Forces to deliver a six-week rapid community testing programme, making use of rapid lateral flow tests which give results within an hour.
For more information on the incoming tiers, head to the Government’s website
The new tiers at a glance
Across all tiers:
People can leave their homes for any purpose and can socialise in outdoor places, subject to the rule of sixCollective worship and weddings can resumeShops and wider leisure facilities including gyms can reopen
New Tier 1 measures:
People should work from home wherever possibleLast orders at hospitality venues at 10pm, with curfew extended to 11pm
New Tier 2 measures:
Alcohol can only be served at hospitality venues as part of a substantial mealLast orders at hospitality venues at 10pm, with curfew extended to 11pm
New Tier 3 measures:
Bars, restaurants and all hospitality venues will remain closed, except for takeaway and deliveryIndoor entertainment and hotels will remain closed
Which areas are under Tier 3?
Large swathes of the Midlands, North East and North West are in the most restrictive Tier 3.
The full list of areas subject to Tier 3 restrictions from 2 December is as follows:
Tees Valley Combined Authority:
HartlepoolMiddlesbroughStockton-on-TeesRedcar and ClevelandDarlington
North East Combined Authority:
SunderlandSouth TynesideGatesheadNewcastle upon TyneNorth TynesideCounty DurhamNorthumberland
Greater ManchesterLancashireBlackpoolBlackburn with Darwen
Yorkshire and The Humber
The HumberWest YorkshireSouth Yorkshire
Birmingham and Black CountryStaffordshire and Stoke-on-TrentWarwickshire, Coventry and Solihull
Derby and DerbyshireNottingham and NottinghamshireLeicester and LeicestershireLincolnshire
Slough (remainder of Berkshire is tier 2: High alert)Kent and Medway
BristolSouth GloucestershireNorth Somerset
How can I check which tier I am in?
(Photo: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
The Government has launched a postcode checker on its website for people to determine which tier they will be in following lockdown.
gov.uk/find-coronavirus-local-restrictions allows you to enter your location to find out the latest advice.
However, at the time of writing, the website appears to have crashed due to the volume of people attempting to access it, with many people checking being faced with the message: “Sorry, we’re experiencing technical difficulties.”
A version of this article originally appeared on our sister title, the Yorkshire Evening Post