‘LATER this week we will announce which areas will fall into which tiers,’ Tory PM Johnson told Parliament yesterday, speaking from Number 10, where he is still self-isolating, and setting out a return to the Three-Tiers system after December 2nd – but with harsher restrictions.
Outlining the government’s ‘Covid winter plan’ Johnson warned: ‘Without sensible precautions we would risk the virus escalating into a winter or new year surge.
‘We are not going to replace national measures with a free-for-all … we are going to go back instead to a regional tiered approach applying the toughest measures where Covid is most prevalent.
‘The scientific advice, I am afraid, is that as we come out our tiers need to be made tougher.’
He then set out the changes to the tiers.
‘In Tier One people will have to work from home wherever possible. In Tier Two alcohol may only be served in hospitality settings as part of a substantial meal. In Tier Three indoor entertainment, hotels and other accommodation will have to close down alongwith all forms of hospitality except for delivery or take aways.’
He then set out new powers for enforcement: ‘We will also strengthen the enforcement ability of Local Authorities, especially trained officers with new powers, to close down premises that pose a risk.’
He said: ‘Unlike the previous arrangement, tiers will now be a uniform set of rules. We will not have negotiations for additional measures with each region.’
‘From the 10.00pm closing time, we are going to change that so that it is last orders at ten with closing at eleven.
‘In Tiers One and Two spectator sports and business events will be free to resume inside and outside with capacity limits and social limits.’
Labour leader Keir Starmer said: ‘I also want to make an open offer to the Prime Minister … Labour will provide any support we can in the national effort to deliver the vaccine safely across the country.
‘That is an open offer.
‘Can I also welcome the fact that the Prime Minister is taking a four nations approach for arrangements over the Christmas period.’