The Prime Minister has announced a national lockdown and instructed people to stay at home to control the virus, protect the NHS and save lives.
The decision follows a rapid rise in infections, hospital admissions and case rates across the country, and our hospitals are now under more pressure than they have been at any other point throughout the pandemic.
This drastic jump in cases has been attributed to the new variant of COVID-19, which scientists have confirmed is between 50%-70% more transmissible.
The four UK Chief Medical Officers have advised that the COVID threat level should move from level four to level five, indicating that if action is not taken NHS capacity may be overwhelmed within 21 days.
You must stay at home. The single most important action we can all take is to stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives.
You must not leave, or be outside of your home except where necessary. You may leave the home to:
- 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
Businesses including all non-essential retail, indoor and outdoor leisure facilities, entertainment venues and personal care facilities such as hairdressers/barbers must close. Hospitality venues must close but can continue to provide takeaway and delivery.
Food shops and supermarkets will remain open, while non-essential retail can remain open for delivery/click and collect.