This is when the Government will decide how to end the lockdown - with tighter controls called for in Tier 3

The Government will decide next week on new tier restrictions for England and how to end the second lockdown.

Tuesday, 17th November 2020, 1:50 pm

The confirmation comes as scientists warned a tougher tier system is needed until vaccines can drive back the Covid-19 pandemic.

Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said today, Tuesday, November 17, that ministers want to see a “significant easing” of coronavirus controls when the lockdown in England is lifted on Wednesday, December 2, but suggested tighter controls may be needed in the top Tier 3.

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A look back at day one of lockdown 2 with new restrictions and closures in King Street, South Shields. The Government will decide on the next steps out of the restrictions next week.

Mr Jenrick said any extension of the current lockdown would require a vote of Parliament.

“It is our hope and expectation that that won’t be the case and that people in England will be able to move back into the tiered system,” he told Sky News.

“There will be a review. That work is undergoing on what those tiers look like and how local areas go back in but that will very much depend on the data.

“We will have to make decisions nearer the end of the month once we have got the most up-to-date information possible.

“But we all want to see a significant easing of the measures in all parts of England at the beginning of next month.”

However, Mr Jenrick told BBC Breakfast the Government will be looking at at the additional measures previously available to Tier 3 areas.

Asked if there could be a tougher tier than Tier 3 in the new system, he said no decision had been made, with Tier 3 considered a baseline, with some areas adding to it when asked.

It comes after Susan Hopkins, medical director of Public Health England (PHE) and chief medical adviser to NHS Test and Trace, said ministers would have to look at “strengthening” the tier system.

Tier 1 restrictions covering huge parts of England had “very little effect”, adding Tier 2 only worked in some areas.

Documents released last week from the Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Modelling (SPI-M), which reports to the Scientific Advisory Committee for Emergencies (Sage), said there was a “clear effect” on infection rates from strict Tier 3 interventions but “much less from Tiers 1 and 2”.

SPI-M believe infections will rise at the same rate as before if the same three-tier system is brought back in on December 2.

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