London and Liverpool have been placed in Tier 2 of Boris Johnson’s new coronavirus lockdown
Manchester, Hull, Newcastle, Birmingham, and Wolverhampton face going into Tier 3.
The decision to save the capital from the most brutal restrictions will be a relief to many in the hospitality
industry, which will be able to reopen to some extent when the current national lockdown ends on December 2.
But the Prime Minister has chosen to impose Tier 3 on huge swathes of the country including all of Kent, Greater
Manchester and Lancashire, much of the Midlands and Bristol – putting a wrecking ball through pubs,
restaurants and clubs are now forced to close.
As Tory MPs threaten to mutiny in a key vote on the plans next week, it emerged that only Cornwall, Scilly and
the Isle of Wight have been put into the loosest Tier, which allows socializing inside homes and pubs subject to
the Rule of Six.
Millions of people will be banned from socializing indoors with other households apart from five days over
COVID-19 cases are falling quickly in more than two-thirds of London boroughs – and appear to be stalling in
the rest. Liverpool has also run a successful campaign to control its outbreak after mass testing in the city.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock formally unveiled the breakdown of areas in the Commons after days of
wrangling, saying the country has to stay ‘vigilant’. He also defended the criteria being used amid complaints
that they are too vague and amount to ‘finger in the air’.
But amid shambolic scenes the government set an online postcode checker live beforehand.
As residents, journalists and MPs scrambled to gather the news on what decisions had been taken, the website
then promptly crashed under the weight of traffic.
Tier 3 means that millions of people would face a ban on households mixing indoors and outdoors, and pubs will
be only be able to provide takeaway service or must close altogether.
The Prime Minister has put most of England in Tier 2 and Tier 3 despite being told it was ‘hard to justify’ when
cases are now falling in every region of the country.