Mixed reaction to new coronavirus restrictions in South Tyneside after rise in infections

South Tyneside’s fight against coronavirus has been put on the defensive with a dramatic infections' spike leading to a new local lockdown.
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Thousands of residents can no longer socialise with friends and relatives outside their immediate support bubble.

And pubs must close by 10pm, with all food and drink orders now being table service only.

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Residents are also advised to not socialise with those outside their households in any public venue and to only use public transport for essential purposes, such as getting to work.

Jarrow MP Kate OsborneJarrow MP Kate Osborne
Jarrow MP Kate Osborne

The same new rules also apply to around two million people in neighbouring Sunderland, Newcastle, North Tyneside, Gateshead, Northumberland and County Durham.

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Jarrow MP Kate Osborne said the move was “vital for our area in order to avoid a second national lockdown”.

The new rules come in at midnight.The new rules come in at midnight.
The new rules come in at midnight.

She added: “When just a few weeks ago, we had one of the lowest rates in the country, we now have one of the highest rates.

“I understand this news may be frustrating for some people and also bring anxiety amongst others, especially as it seemed like we were just returning to having a bit of normality in our lives.

“But the COVID-19 figures are rising at a dangerous level in our area and we need to intervene now to try and prevent further restrictions and to protect our loved ones.

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“I would urge all constituents to follow the latest guidelines as closely as possible.”

Lee HughesLee Hughes
Lee Hughes

South Shields MP Emma Lewell Buck tweeed: "I know people will be concerned and upset at this news. Some of these restrictions appear to be contradictory and are not backed up with an increase in testing, tracking and tracing. I have and will continue to do all I can to clarify matters with the Govt and our council."

Lee Hughes, 50, boss of the Red Hackle pub in Perth Avenue, Jarrow, said: “The 10pm closure means I will lose the best trading time of the day.

“I’ve already lost about 70 per cent of trade because my older customers are still too frightened to come out.

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“I need clarity on how long these new restrictions will be in place. It will be Christmas soon, so I need to know where I stand with that.

“I’m going to lose a lot more business, it's the peak time that is going to be hit.”

Announcing the new rules in the House of Commons, Mr Hancock gave no indication of how long the restrictions would last.

He said: “One of our vital lines of defence has been taking targeted action at a local level.

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“We’ve seen local action work well in some parts of the country and now we must take further action.

“We’ve seen concerning rates of infection within parts of the North East."

The latest restrictions, which will see leisure and entertainment venues close between 10pm and 5am, have been described as necessary to prevent a “damaging full lockdown”.

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Read more: 36 new Covid-19 cases confirmed in South Tyneside as North East total...

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