Breaking News: Bedford now in Tier 3 coronavirus restrictions

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Summary

  • Bedford to move into Tier 3 on 00:01 Saturday (19 December)
  • Mayor says Government “have not asked my opinion” on the decision
  • Bedford and Kempston MP says the news is “very disappointing news but not unexpected”. He also urged people to “rethink their Christmas plans”
  • Hospitality business owners say “pressure is mounting” on their sector

What do the restrictions mean:

  • You must not meet socially indoors or in private gardens with anybody that you do not live or have a support bubble with
  • All hospitality venues must close, with the exception of takeaway, drive-through or delivery
  • Everyone who can work from home should do so
  • Gyms and sports facilities can remain open for individual exercise and exercise in single households or support bubbles, but indoor group activities and exercise classes are not permitted
  • Indoor entertainment venues must close including indoor play, cinemas and museums
Click above to see the full restrictions

Full Story

Health Secretary Matt Hancock has announced Bedford Borough is to be placed into Tier 3 until at least the next review of coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions on 23 December.

These new restrictions will come into effect at 00:01 on Saturday (19 December).

Central Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes will also be moved into Tier 3. Along with other areas across England, meaning 38 million people will be under tighter restrictions.

In these areas the following restrictions apply:

  • You must not meet socially indoors or in private gardens with anybody that you do not live or have a support bubble with
  • All hospitality venues must close, with the exception of takeaway, drive-through or delivery
  • Everyone who can work from home should do so
  • Gyms and sports facilities can remain open for individual exercise and exercise in single households or support bubbles, but indoor group activities and exercise classes are not permitted
  • Indoor entertainment venues must close including indoor play, cinemas and museums

Local political leaders have called the news “disappointing”

“The Government have not asked my opinion on the decision to move Bedford Borough into Tier 3,” said Mayor of Bedford, Dave Hodgson.

“I repeat my ask to the Government, that they ensure there is enough financial support for local business and organisations, especially for our hospitality industry.

“I have also asked that Bedford Borough be given more testing and access to the vaccine rollout.”

The Mayor also said that the area had seen increases in cases over the last couple of weeks.

“Here in Bedford Borough, we have seen 457 cases in the seven days up to 13 December, which is double the previous week’s total and our positivity rate has increased to 15.9%.

“So please, stay at home as much as possible, minimise the amount of people that you see, and keep following the ‘hands, space, face’ advice.

“We need every single person to play their part, help protect the NHS, and save lives.”

Mohammed Yasin, MP for Bedford and Kempston said the news was not a surprise and the hospitality industry will suffer.

“This is very disappointing news but not unexpected as infection rates in our area have doubled in the last week,” he said.

“It’s another blow to the hospitality industry and I will be pushing the Government to come up with a proper support package for all affected businesses.”

Mr Yasin also asked people to review their Christmas plans.

“I urge everyone to really think through their Christmas plans and be careful not to expose our loved ones and ourselves to this dreadful virus when infection rates are so high and a vaccine is on its way.”

“Pressure mounting” on hospitaltiy industry

Gareth and Louise Barber who own live music venue Esquires and popular cocktail bar Bears & Tales have said “pressure is mounting” on their businesses.

“Although we saw it coming, it still hits hard,” they said.

“Unless more support comes for wet-led businesses and the hospitality trade that has always thrived, we are going to see mass closures and redundancies in the new year.”

Click on the thumbnails to see the restrictions in each tier

This is a breaking news story and will be updated as more information becomes available…

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