Coronavirus: Government announces new lockdown for England
Shropshire Council has vowed to support residents and businesses after the Government announced a new national Lockdown to help curb the spread of coronavirus.
The national lockdown comes into force immediately (Monday 4 January evening) and includes the closure of all primary schools, secondary schools and colleges.
Under the new lockdown measures primary schools, secondary schools and colleges will remain open only for vulnerable children and the children of critical workers. All other children will learn remotely until at least February half term.
Early Years settings, such as nurseries, will remain open.
Higher education provision will remain online until at least mid-February for all except future critical worker courses.
The new lockdown restrictions for Shropshire will mean everyone must Stay at Home and may leave only for a limited set of reasons. These include:
- Shop for basic necessities, for you or a vulnerable person.
- Go to work, or provide voluntary or charitable services, if you cannot reasonably do so from home.
- Exercise with your household (or support bubble) or one other. person, this should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area.
- Meet your support bubble or childcare bubble where necessary, but only if you are legally permitted to form one.
- Seek medical assistance or avoid injury, illness or risk of harm (including domestic abuse).
- Attend education or childcare – for those eligible.
Other measures include:
- Restaurants can continue to offer delivery for food.
- Clinically extremely vulnerable people must shield.
- Outdoor sports venues – such as golf courses, tennis courts and outside gyms – must close.
- Amateur team sports are not allowed, but elite sport such can continue.
Further details about the lockdown measures can be found here – www.gov.uk/guidance/national-lockdown-stay-at-home
Peter Nutting, Leader of Shropshire Council said:
“This change will have a significant impact on both our residents and local businesses, and we will be doing everything within our power and resources to support them.
“It is important residents and businesses follow the new rules and carefully consider everything they do, making sure they stay at home and limit their contact with people outside their household and support bubbles.
“This news will be extremely upsetting and frustrating for a lot of people who live and work in Shropshire, but we will get through this together. If we do the right thing and keep our distance, we cannot spread the infection.
“We are ready to help. Our Shropshire Council COVID-19 Helpline – 0345 678 9028 – remains open for anyone that needs additional support.
“We have proven we can get our cases down before and I have every confidence we will do it again. It is important to remember that some people who have COVID-19 will not have symptoms and that a new strain, which spreads more easily, is circulating in the West Midlands.
“People rely on council services more than ever and we will continue to keep essential services running. However, some of our services will be impacted by the Government’s restrictions – please check our website and social media channels for the latest information.”
Rachel Robinson, Shropshire Council’s director of public health, said:
“We are now seeing infection rates in Shropshire of more than 238 cases per 100,000 people over seven days. This is a significant increase from the numbers we were seeing just last week when we moved to Tier 3 and this rate is expected to continue to rise sharply over the next few days.
“I know this is hard to take, especially as people have been stepping up in a big way to try and stop the spread of the virus.
“We all have high hopes for 2021, with the vaccine being rolled out and the promise of some normality returning. We can all help by doing the right thing; protecting our community, friends, families, neighbours and most vulnerable people across Shropshire by staying at home. We’ve done it before and we can do it again.”
Step Up and help us stop the spread of coronavirus:
- Stay At Home
- Work from home, if you can
- Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
- Do not leave home if you or anyone in your household has symptoms
- Wear a face covering in indoor settings (food shops, workplaces) where social distancing may be more difficult, and where you may come close to people who are not part of your household or bubble.
- Anyone who has any symptoms should book a test and not leave home for at least 10 days. Those living in households should self-isolate for 10 days if they or any members of the household receive a positive test.
- Rapid testing is available for people who don’t have COVID-19 symptoms. These test can be booked here www.shropshire.gov.uk/lfdpublictesting/
- This in addition to the symptomatic testing, that is already available for those displaying COVID-19 symptoms at venues across the county. If you have symptoms, book a test by calling 119 or online https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test
For local advice and support during the pandemic (especially if you are self-isolating), call Shropshire Council’s COVID-19 Helpline on 0345 678 9028 (lines open on the weekend on Saturday from 9am-4pm and Sunday 9am-12pm) or visit our website at www.shropshire.gov.uk/coronavirus.