İrem UZUN -TDO- Boris Johnson has announced that London and parts of east and southeast England will enter a "Tier 4" lockdown due to a new, more infectious strain of coronavirus. "We cannot continue with Christmas as planned," Johnson said at a press conference on Saturday, stating that they "bitterly regret" the changes that need to be made to restrictions.
The announcement follows emergency talks between Johnson and cabinet ministers on Saturday afternoon as scientists confirmed that the new variant coronavirus was spreading more rapidly. “This is early data and it’s subject to review. But it’s the best that we have at the moment, and we have to act on information as we have it, because this is spreading very fast,” Johnson said.
From Saturday midnight, a new Tier 4 was introduced in areas including London, Kent, Essex and Bedfordshire. The UK prime minister said that people in Tier 4 areas must stay at home, cannot travel and mix indoors with anyone not from their household. He said that everyone in all Tiers should stay local and not travel during Christmas. Tier 4 restrictions require that non-essential shops close.
Johnson said that Christmas this year would be a chance to “lift a glass to those that aren’t there” in the hope that increased restrictions would allow families to meet again in the new year. He said that bubbles for elderly and lonely people would provide “consolation” for cancelled festive plans.