Watch: Matt Hancock moves more areas into Tier 4
Three-quarters of people in England in Tier 4 from Thursday
Matt Hancock adds further 20 million people into toughest tier
Health secretary: ‘We have to take some difficult decisions’
It follows dire infection and hospitalisation numbers
Vast majority of country now in a tier that was only created 11 days ago
Three-quarters of people in England are now facing the toughest coronavirus restrictions after the government plunged more areas into Tier 4.
Health secretary Matt Hancock told MPs on Wednesday: “We must act to suppress the virus now. We have to take some difficult decisions.”
It comes just 11 days after Tier 4 – which resembles November’s national lockdown – was created in response to the new variant of COVID-19, which is said to be up to 70% more transmissible.
Now, 44 million people – or 78% of England’s population – are subject to the toughest rules.
Speaking in the House of Commons, Hancock announced the Midlands and North East, as well as parts of the North West and parts of the South West, will go into Tier 4 on Thursday.
Here is the full list of areas moving into Tier 4:
the city of Leicester
Leicestershire (Oadby and Wigston, Harborough, Hinckley and Bosworth, Blaby, Charnwood, North West Leicestershire, Melton)
Lincolnshire (City of Lincoln, Boston, South Kesteven, West Lindsey, North Kesteven, South Holland, East Lindsey)
Northamptonshire (Corby, Daventry, East Northamptonshire, Kettering, Northampton, South Northamptonshire, Wellingborough)
Derby and Derbyshire (Derby, Amber Valley, South Derbyshire, Bolsover, North East Derbyshire, Chesterfield, Erewash, Derbyshire Dales, High Peak)
Nottingham and Nottinghamshire (Gedling, Ashfield, Mansfield, Rushcliffe, Bassetlaw, Newark and Sherwood, Broxtowe)
Birmingham and Black Country (Dudley, Birmingham, Sandwell, Walsall, Wolverhampton)
Warwickshire (Rugby, Nuneaton and Bedworth, Warwick, North Warwickshire, Stratford-upon-Avon)
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent (East Staffordshire, Stafford, South Staffordshire, Cannock Chase, Lichfield, Staffordshire Moorlands, Newcastle under Lyme, Tamworth, Stoke-on-Trent)
Lancashire (Burnley, Pendle, Blackburn with Darwen, Ribble Valley, Blackpool, Preston, Hyndburn, Chorley, Fylde, Lancaster, Rossendale, South Ribble, West Lancashire, Wyre)
Cheshire and Warrington (Cheshire East, Cheshire West and Chester, Warrington)
Cumbria (Eden, Carlisle, South Lakeland, Barrow-in-Furness, Copeland, Allerdale)
Greater Manchester (Bolton, Bury, Manchester, Oldham, Rochdale, Salford, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford, Wigan)
Tees Valley (Darlington, Hartlepool, Middlesbrough, Redcar and Cleveland, Stockton-on-Tees )
North East (County Durham, Gateshead, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, North Tyneside, Northumberland, South Tyneside, Sunderland)
Gloucestershire (Gloucester, Forest of Dean, Cotswolds, Tewkesbury, Stroud, Cheltenham)
Somerset Council (Mendip, Sedgemoor, Somerset West and Taunton, South Somerset)
Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole
Isle of Wight
*A list of areas that were already in Tier 4 is at the bottom of this page*
Meanwhile, a number of areas have been moved into Tier 3, meaning almost the entire population of England is in the top two tiers.
The areas moving into Tier 3 are: Rutland; Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin; Worcestershire; Herefordshire; Liverpool City Region; York and North Yorkshire; Bath and North East Somerset; Devon, Plymouth and Torbay; Cornwall; Dorset; and Wiltshire.
Hancock said: “I know that Tier 3 and 4 measures place a significant burden on people, and especially on businesses affected, but I am afraid it is absolutely necessary because of the number of cases that we’ve seen.”
It comes as the UK continues to endure a winter coronavirus crisis, with a record 53,135 lab-confirmed infections on Tuesday and record COVID-19 hospitalisations in five of England’s seven NHS regions.
On Wednesday, Independent Sage expert Prof Christina Pagel warned that COVID-19 numbers will “get a lot worse” from next week due to households mixing over Christmas.
In better news, a vaccine from Oxford University and AstraZeneca has been approved for use in the UK, with Hancock saying 530,000 doses will be available from Monday.
The jab, which has been described as a “game changer”, was given the green light by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
The government has ordered 100 million doses of the vaccine, enough to vaccinate 50 million people. A jab from Pfizer and BioNTech also began rolling out at the start of the month.
Here is a list of areas which were already in Tier 4 before Wednesday’s announcement...
East of England
Central Bedfordshire, Bedford, Milton Keynes and Luton
All 32 London boroughs plus the City of London
Berkshire (Bracknell Forest, Reading, Slough, Windsor and Maidenhead, West Berkshire and Wokingham)
Brighton and Hove, East Sussex and West Sussex
Hampshire (all local authorities except New Forest, which is in Tier 3), Southampton and Portsmouth
Kent and Medway
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