West Yorkshire lockdown: Wakefield Council leader ‘frustrated’ after government U-turn on Covid measures

The leader of Wakefield Council has said she “shares people’s frustrations” after Boris Johnson’s U-turn over lockdown.

Monday, 2nd November 2020, 12:32 pm
Updated Monday, 2nd November 2020, 12:36 pm
Wakefield's Trinity Walk shopping centre has strict social distancing measures. Picture: Scott Merrylees.

Non-essential shops across England will be forced to close again from Thursday, as many of the restrictions from the spring are reintroduced.

It means that West Yorkshire will not go into Tier Three today, as had been expected after rising coronavirus cases.

But Wakefield Council leader Denise Jeffery said the government had insisted that a new lockdown would not be imposed while in talks with regional politicians over the Tier Three restrictions last week.

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The Prime Minister had also publicly ruled out the measures just days before announcing them on Saturday.

In a statement, Councillor Jeffery said: “We were assured, during the negotiations with government, that national restrictions were not being brought in, so I share the frustration of local residents and businesses alike that will now be feeling confused.

“Those frustrations aside, the situation in Wakefield remains critical due to the sharp rise in cases and the significant pressure our health system is now under.

“I am again urging everyone to play their part in doing all they can to reduce the spread of the virus, protect the NHS and protect one another.

“It is absolutely essential that you reduce your contact with others as much as possible, continue to wash your hands regularly, wear a face covering in indoor public spaces and maintain social distancing with anyone outside of your household or support bubble.”

Unlike the spring, schools, colleges and universities will remain open and people who cannot do their jobs from home will still be able to go to work.

The local testing service is available from Monday to Friday and bookings for appointments can be made at www.nhs.uk/ask-for-a-coronavirus-test or by calling 01924 224497. Or email the person’s name and contact details to [email protected] so the booking team can get in touch.

The local testing service will prioritise essential workers and school children in order to keep essential services running and support schools across the district to remain open.