Health secretary Matt Hancock has today set out the coronavirus tier restrictions in England after the national lockdown ends on 2 December.
The adjusted tier rules see hospitality sites in tier 1 (medium) shutting at 11pm, with the same restrictions applying in tier 2 (high) – though there, alcohol will only be allowed to be served as part of a substantial meal.
However in tier 3 (very high), all pubs and restaurants have to close to dine-in customers, and can only offer delivery and takeaway services.
Hancock revealed which areas will be designated in which tiers, with only Isle of Wight, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly in tier 1.
The full list of tier 2 regions is:
Bedfordshire and Milton Keynes
Cambridgeshire and Peterborough
Dorset, Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole
East and West Sussex and Brighton and Hove
Essex, Thurrock and Southend on Sea
Hampshire, Portsmouth and Southampton
Reading, Wokingham, Bracknell Forest, Windsor and Maidenhead, West Berkshire
Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin
Somerset and Bath and North East Somerset
Warrington and Cheshire
Wiltshire and Swindon
York and North Yorkshire
While areas subject to the most stringent restrictions, tier 3, comprise:
Birmingham and Black Country
Bristol, South Gloucestershire, North Somerset
Derby and Derbyshire
Kent & Medway
Lancashire, Blackpool and Blackburn with Darwen
Leicester and Leicestershire
North East Combined Authority: Sunderland, South Tyneside, Gateshead, Newcastle upon Tyne, North Tyneside, County Durham and Northumberland
Nottingham and Nottinghamshire
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent
Warwickshire, Coventry and Solihull
The health secretary told the House of Commons: “The national measures have successfully turned the curve and have begun to ease pressure on the NHS. Cases are down by 19% from a week ago, and daily hospital admissions have fallen 7% in the last week.
“We must protect our NHS this winter. We must keep suppressing the virus until a vaccine can make us safe. We will do this by returning to a tiered approach, applying the toughest measures to the parts of the country where cases and pressure on the NHS are highest and allowing greater freedom in areas where prevalence is lower.
“While the strategy remains the same, current epidemiological evidence and clinical advice shows that we must make the tiers tougher than they were before to protect the NHS through the winter and avert another national lockdown.”
The decisions as to which areas went into which tiers were based on the case rate in all age groups, the rate at which cases are rising, the positivity rate and the pressures on the local NHS.
Hancock continued: “When setting the boundaries for these tiers, we’ve looked not just at geographical areas but also at the human geographies which influence how the virus spreads, like travel patterns and the epidemiological situation in neighbouring areas.
“All three tiers are less stringent than the national lockdown we are living in now. To keep people safe and to keep the gains that are being made, more areas than before will be in the top two tiers.”
He detailed that the government has increased funding through the Contain Outbreak Management Fund, which will provide monthly payments to local authorities facing higher restrictions. However, he did not disclose whether there would be extra financial support for hospitality sites which have to remain shut.
The measures will be reviewed every fortnight, with the first full review to be completed by the end of 16 December.