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Parts of England to Face New Restrictions within Days

 New measures of restrictions are to be announced in parts of England within days, a minister says. A new three-tier system for local lockdowns is also likely to be announced.

Pubs and restaurants in swathes of the north of England could face restrictions.

“It’s no surprise we are considering measures at the tougher end,” one Whitehall source said, adding that public health officials were alarmed by a 60% rise in hospital admissions in the north-east in recent days. “We know hospitality is a big factor, especially the comings-and-goings in fast food or in bars.”

From Friday, all pubs and restaurants across central Scotland, including Glasgow and Edinburgh, are to close, while in the rest of Scotland hospitality venues must shut at 18:00 BST and alcohol can only be served outdoors.

Liverpool, Manchester and Newcastle upon Tyne have the highest infection rates in the country.These areas will be placed into the top tier of restrictions, with an announcement possibly on Monday, in a new system called the Local Covid Alert Level.

Nottinghamshire is the latest area to be face stringent restrictions on social gatherings. The city is expected to be put under similar measures as the north-east of England.

Nottingham city council’s director of public health, Alison Challenger, described the surge in infections in the area as “extremely worrying” and confirmed that new rules were expected imminently.

Labour published figures on Wednesday showing that 19 out of 20 areas in England under restrictions for two months had reported increasing infection rates.

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