Christmas crackdown: Boris Johnson announces tighter rules on households mixing – and a new Tier 4

19 Dec 2020 @ 4.47 pm
| News

The Prime Minister has introduced tighter restrictions over the Christmas period.

Boris Johnson announced a dramatic scaling back of the Government’s “Christmas bubble” plans, saying he did so “with a very heavy heart”.

In Tiers 1-3 in England the rules allowing a maximum of three households to mix will now be restricted to Christmas Day only.

York is in Tier 2.

Previously the plan was to allow three households to mix over five days of relaxed measures during Christmas. But today the PM said that was “too long” and that the mixing of households from different areas across the country could “relaunch the pandemic”.

The Prime Minister also announced that a new Tier 4 of coronavirus restrictions will be introduced from Sunday morning due to the spread of the virus in parts of London, the south-east and east of England

Speaking at a Downing Street briefing on Saturday, he said that people will be asked to stay at home and work from home if they can, not enter or leave Tier 4 areas, not stay away from home overnight and can only meet one person from another household outside in a public space.

He also said that non-essential retail, indoor gyms and leisure facilities in these areas will close.

Mr Johnson added: “We will introduce new restrictions in the most affected areas, specifically those parts of London, the south-east and east of England which are currently in Tier 3.

“These areas will enter a new Tier 4.

 “Residents in those areas must stay at home apart from limited exemptions.”

The Prime Minister said: “I know how much emotion people invest in this time of year, and how important it is, for instance, for grandparents to see their grandchildren, for families to be together.

“So I know how disappointing this will be.

“But we have said throughout this pandemic that we must and we will be guided by the science.

“When the science changes, we must change our response.”