Is London going into tier two lockdown?
15 October 2020, 10:02 | Updated: 15 October 2020, 10:07
London lockdown: the capital is going into tier two lockdown at midnight on Friday 16 October.
Earlier this week, Boris Johnson announced a three tier traffic light system in order to simplify lockdown measures in different areas of the country.
The 'rule of three' model of Local Covid Alert Levels in England will see different areas put under different rules depending on the R rate.
The levels are medium (tier one), high (tier two), and very high (tier three).
London is currently in tier one, which means that it is operating under the general lockdown rules - notably the 10pm curfew and rule of six.
However, it has now been confirmed that this will change this week.
Is London going into tier two of lockdown?
It was confirmed on Thursday 15 October that London will move into tier two at midnight on Friday 16 October.
This means that tougher lockdown restrictions will be in force from Saturday 17 October.
The news comes after local leaders have claimed that it is 'inevitable' that London will move into tier two of lockdown, with some predicting it could happen this week.
In an interview, London Mayor Sadiq Khan said: “The virus is now spreading very quickly in every corner of London. The number of cases is rapidly increasing and all the indicators we look at are moving in the wrong direction.
"As of today, London is at 'medium' in the government's new alert levels. However, Londoners should understand that this could change very quickly – potentially even this week."
London recorded 78 new cases of coronavirus per 100,000 people in the week up to 9 October, which is significantly below hotspots such as Nottingham, which recorded 843, and Liverpool, which had 609.
However, Mr Khan said on Tuesday that the average in London had climbed to 90 new cases per 100,000, and the mayor added to Sky News: "Which means, I'm afraid, it's inevitable over the course of the next few days London will have passed a trigger point to be in the second tier."
Speaking about the possibility of whether different boroughs could adopt different levels, Mr Khan added: "Many Londoners work in one borough, live in another borough, study in another borough, go to a restaurant in another borough so we're really keen to go as one city."
A spokesperson for London’s City Hall said: "discussions with London leaders, scientific advisers and the government will continue over the coming days and the mayor will be as clear as possible with Londoners about what they can expect as soon as possible.
"Nobody wants to see new measures that will impact on businesses in London such as the hospitality sector – least of all the mayor – but we have a responsibility to act on the evidence if it will save lives."
What is the second tier of lockdown?
As well as the general rule of six and 10pm curfew, people living in an area with tier two lockdown must not meet with anyone outside their household or support bubble in an indoor setting, including inside houses and restaurants.
People should also aim to reduce the number of journeys they make, and cycle and walk where possible.