Matt Hancock's statement in full as he introduces new lockdown measures in North West England
31 July 2020, 11:17
People in areas like Greater Manchester, West Yorkshire and East Lancashire will no longer be allowed to visit their friends inside their houses.
Matt Hancock has announced that people living in certain areas of northern England will no longer be allowed to visit friends inside their homes.
Taking to Twitter, the Health Secretary wrote: "We're constantly looking at the latest data on the spread of coronavirus, and unfortunately we've seen an increasing rate of transmission in parts of Northern England.
"We've been working with local leaders across the region, and today I chaired a meeting of the Local Action Gold Committee. Based on the data, we decided that in Greater Manchester, parts of West Yorkshire & East Lancashire we need to take immediate action to keep people safe.
1/4 We're constantly looking at the latest data on the spread of coronavirus, and unfortunately we've seen an increasing rate of transmission in parts of Northern England.— Matt Hancock (@MattHancock) July 30, 2020
"The spread is largely due to households meeting and not abiding to social distancing. So from midnight tonight, people from different households will not be allowed to meet each other indoors in these areas.
"We take this action with a heavy heart, but we can see increasing rates of covid across Europe and are determined to do whatever is necessary to keep people safe."
He also added: "We're constantly vigilant and we've been looking at the data and unfortunately we've seen across parts of Northern England an increase in the number of cases of coronavirus.
"So today I held a meeting of the Government's Gold Committee and working with local leaders including for instance Andy Burnham the mayor of Greater Manchester, we've decided that we need to action across Greater Manchester, East Lancashire and parts of West Yorkshire.
"So from midnight tonight (Friday) we are banning households meeting up indoors."