Buckinghamshire Council reacts as Buckinghamshire enters Tier Three Coronavirus restrictions
Buckinghamshire has moved into tier 3 Coronavirus restrictions this morning.
The Council has been told by Government that Buckinghamshire must move into Tier 3 from 00.01 on Saturday (19 December), the very highest level of coronavirus restrictions in England.
Following the Government's Tier review announcements today, the County will join other areas around London including Essex, Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Berkshire, previously in Tier 2.
Tier 3 Restrictions mean:
What are the rules in tier 3?
Hospitality venues will close, except for delivery and takeaway service.
In tier 3, hotels and other accommodation providers must also close, except for specific work purposes where people cannot return home.
Outdoor sports, including golf and tennis, will be allowed to continue in all tiers, as will amateur team sports such as football. Unlike the first two tiers, spectators will not be allowed to watch sport in tier 3.
People must not meet socially indoors or in most outdoor places with anybody they do not live with, or who is not in their support bubble; this includes in any private garden or at most outdoor venues. At other outdoor spaces such as parks or beaches people must not socialise in groups of more than six.
Everyone who can work from home should do so.
You can continue to travel within your area for work, education and purposes of providing care or medical assistance, however you should avoid travelling outside your area and reduce the number of journeys you make wherever possible.
If you live in a tier 3 area, you must continue to follow tier 3 rules when you travel to a tier 1 or tier 2 area. The government does not recommend that you travel into a tier 3 area, for example, to do Christmas shopping.
Buckinghamshire Council Leader Martin Tett said he was 'bitterly disappointed' that the county had moved from Tier 1 to Tier 3 in a matter of weeks, particularly after the efforts made during the recent second lockdown.
"So soon after the good news about the vaccine roll out, If anyone needed a reminder about how serious a threat coronavirus remains, then this is it," he said.
"We've seen cases sharply rising again locally which is clearly the wrong direction and going into Tier 3 now brings additional restrictions and pressures, particularly for our local economy, that nobody wanted to see.
"This definitely isn't the news we wanted, but we'll continue working with our Members of Parliament, the Buckinghamshire NHS and local business organisations to understand the full implications for our residents, our businesses and of course for people's health and wellbeing."
Martin added: "It remains imperative that everyone in Buckinghamshire follows the rules laid out, This is going to mean difficulties, tough choices and personal sacrifices particularly over the Christmas and New Year period. But, it's the best way to beat Covid-19, get infection rates down and for the country to gain back the upper hand against this deadly virus."
The Council will be issuing more details, help and advice on its website in the coming days.