"Christmas is going to be different this year, perhaps very different."
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced a national lockdown for England to commence from midnight on Thursday, November 5, 2020. It will apply to all parts of the nation until December 2, 2020.
The announcement by the PM has come after major concerns by the British government related to the escalation of Covid-19 cases across the country.
Therefore, the four-week lockdown is part of the measures which are being deployed by Boris Johnson and the Conservative government.
The announcement does come after huge pressure from the Labour Party with their leader Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer.
Starmer has been supporting the circuit breaker plan which was an option for the government when the Sage advice was published in October 2020.
The rise in positive Coronavirus cases has reached over a million, 1,011,660.
One scientific model, predicts up to 4,000 deaths a day during the winter months no action is taken by the British government.
Therefore, now the new England lockdown announcement has been formalised.
Boris Johnson Announcement
In his announcement, PM Boris Johnson said:
“In this country alas as across much of Europe the virus is spreading even faster than the reasonable worst-case scenario of our scientific advisors.
“Whose models as you’ve just seen now suggest that unless we act we could see deaths in this country running at several thousand a day a peak of mortality alas bigger than the one we saw in April
“And so now is the time to take action because there is no alternative and from Thursday until the start of December you must stay at home.
“You may only leave home for specific reasons.
“Including for education, for work let’s say if you cannot work from home, for exercise and recreation outdoors with your household or on your own, with one person from another household for medical reasons appointments, and to escape injury or harm, to shop for food and essentials, and to provide care for vulnerable people or as a volunteer.”
“I’m afraid non-essential shops leisure and entertainment venues will all be closed though click and collect services can continue and essential shops will remain open so there’s no need to
“Pubs bars restaurants must close except for takeaway and delivery services.
“Workplaces should stay open where people can’t work from home for example in the construction and manufacturing sectors.”
“Single adult households can still form exclusive support bubbles with one other household and children will still be able to move between homes if their parents are separate.
“I’m under no illusions about how difficult this will be for businesses which have already had to endure such hardship this year and I’m truly truly sorry for that.
“And that’s why we’re going to extend the furlough system through November the furlough scheme was a success in the spring it supported people in businesses in a critical time we will not end it we will extend furlough until December.
“Christmas is going to be different this year, perhaps very different.
“But it’s my sincere hope and belief that by taking tough action now we can allow families across the country to be together.”
The core reason is summed up by a statement on the UK government website saying:
“COVID-19 case numbers are rising rapidly across the whole of the UK and in other countries.
“We must act now to control the spread of the virus. The single most important action we can all take, in fighting coronavirus, is to stay at home, to protect the NHS and save lives.”
Johnson conveyed a lot more details related to the lockdown in his speech and ensure the public that this is the only way forward to tackle the virus.
What are the new Lockdown Measures?
The new lockdown has some differences to the previous national lockdown in March 2020.
The key measures announced for the lockdown commencing on Thursday, November 5, 2020, include the following.
- Pubs, bars and restaurants will have to close
- Gyms and sports facilities including swimming pools, golf courses and driving ranges, dance studios, stables and riding centres, soft play facilities, climbing walls and climbing centres, archery and shooting ranges, water and theme parks must will close
- Elite sport can continue but amateur sports will have to cease
- Non-essential shops must close – not limited to clothing and electronics stores, vehicle showrooms, travel agents, betting shops, auction houses, tailors, car washes, tobacco and vape shops
- Venues to close include theatres, concert halls, cinemas, museums and galleries, casinos, adult gaming centres and arcades, bingo halls, bowling alleys, concert halls, zoos and other animal attractions, botanical gardens
- Weddings, civil partnership ceremonies will not be permitted to take place except in exceptional circumstances
- Places of worship will be closed unless used for individual prayer, broadcast acts of worship, funerals (maximum of 30 people), formal childcare or where part of a school, essential voluntary and public services, such as blood donation or food banks and other exempted activities such as some support groups
- International travel is banned, except for work purposes
- Takeaway venues can remain open
- Food shops, supermarkets, garden centres and certain other retailers providing essential goods and services can stay open
- Schools, colleges and universities will stay open
- Exercise outdoors can be taken for an unlimited amount of time either with members of their household or one other person
- Playgrounds can remain open
- Workplaces to stay open only where people can’t work from home, including if your job involves working in other people’s homes
- Construction and manufacturing to continue and workplaces remain open
- Different households will not be allowed to mix, although support and childcare bubbles can continue
- Support bubbles will remain for people who live alone and households made up of single parents and children
- Children will be able to move between homes if their parents are separated
- You are not allowed to meet in in a private garden
- Vulnerable or older people aged over 70 will be told to be especially careful in following the rules and minimise contact with others
- Shielding measures will not be reintroduced
- The furlough scheme paying 80% of employee wages will be extended until December 2020
You can only shop for basic necessities, such as food and medicine, but this should be as infrequent as possible.
If you have any medical concerns, reasons, NHS appointments and emergencies, you are allowed to get attention as required by leaving your home.
If you are a victim of domestic abuse or face other difficulties in your household, you are allowed to leave your home to escape any harm.
You can attend appointments for Jobcentre Plus sites, Courts and Civil Registrations Offices.
You can exercise or visit outdoor public places only with the people you live with, or people in your support bubble, or one person from another household. Outdoor public places include,
parks, beaches, countryside, public gardens (whether or not you pay to enter them), allotments and playgrounds
For more detailed information about the new lockdown measures, visit the government website here.
It is envisaged that after this new lockdown, the government “will seek to ease restrictions, going back into the tiered system on a local and regional basis according to the latest data and trends.”
The relevant authorities, including the police, will have powers to enforce the law – including through fines and dispersing gatherings if rules are not abided.
Therefore, to protect lives and loved ones, it is important to follow the new lockdown rules in England in order to reduce the spread of Covid-19 in the country.