Government confirm Leicester lockdown as shops and schools are told to shut
29 June 2020, 21:28 | Updated: 29 June 2020, 21:37
From tomorrow, Leicester will have to return to an earlier stage of lockdown following a spike of COVID-19 in the area.
Leicester will stay under stricter lockdown regulations from tomorrow, the Government have announced.
This comes after it was reported earlier today Leicester could become the first area in the UK to be put under a local lockdown.
This evening, in the House of Commons, Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced that they will be going ahead with the plans.
Mr Hancock said: "Having taken clinical advice on the actions necessary, and having discussed them with the local team in Leicester and Leicestershire, we've made some difficult but important decisions.
"We've decided that from tomorrow, non-essential retail will have to close.
"As children have been particularly impacted by this outbreak, schools will also need to close from Thursday, staying open for vulnerable children and children of critical workers as they did throughout."
He continued: "Unfortunately, the clinical advice is that the relaxation of shielding measures due on July 6 can not now take place in Leicester.
"We recommend to people in Leicester stay at home as much as you can, and we recommend against all but essential travel to, from and within Leicester."
"The more people that follow the rules, the quicker we will get hold of this virus and get Leicester back to normal."
Mr Hancock added that the Government will be keeping these local measures under review and will not keep them them in place "any longer than is necessary".
They will be reviewing this in two weeks time.
Matt Hancock also said in the House of Commons: "I know this is a worrying time for people living in Leicester, but I want you to know that you have our full support, we do not take these decisions lightly.
"But with the interest of the people of Leicester in our hearts, I want everyone in Leicester to know that we've taken every one of these decisions to protect them from this terrible virus."