A spike in the number of Covid-19 cases in north-east England has prompted the imposition of new restrictions to curb the spread.
Thousands of people in Newcastle, Tyneside, Durham and Sunderland are expected to face new local restrictions. In order to limit social contact between different households, a 10 pm curfew is expected to be imposed and pubs will have to close earlier.
Speaking to the Sun Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “The only way to make sure that the country is able to enjoy Christmas is to be tough now”.
The prime minister formerly stated that the government was making all efforts to avoid a spike of the pandemic and another nationwide lockdown. New measures to curb the spread are expected to be unveiled later on Thursday.
Amid widespread criticism of the government`s testing system and testing shortages, coronavirus cases across the UK increased by 3,991, raising the total to 378,219, according to the most recent figures from the government.
Robert Jenrick, the housing communities and local government secretary said: “The number of cases has been rising rapidly in many parts of the country, but particularly in the north-east, and so a decision has been made to impose further restrictions there.
“A full announcement will be made tomorrow, so people living in that part of the country should watch out for that, and the measures come into play at midnight on Thursday evening. Over the course of the day, a full briefing will be made available to councils and the business community.”
Mr Johnson said that his aim is to “stop the surge” in coronavirus cases and “flatten the second hump”.