Loughborough is placed on Tier 1 alert level of new Government system

Government has today announced the new three tier system, and Loughborough is placed on the lowest rung

Today the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, announced the new ‘three tier’ alert system for England in which we in Loughbough have been placed on Level One, meaning that there are no new restrictions. The system is designed to standardise local lockdowns.

The system will work in three tiers, with Level one (Medium alert) meaning the continuation of the current national rules, along with the rule of six and 10pm curfew, will stay in place. Level two (High alert) will mean some new restrictions such as households not being allowed to mix indoors or at hospitality venues.

Level three (Very High alert), is where it is more complex. This will include at least the closure of pubs and bars, but also, and subject to negotiation with the local government, closure of places like casinos, gyms, and public pools. So far only the Liverpool City Region is on this level of alert.

Looking to affairs near to home, Nottingham is moving into a level two alert level with its 830 cases per 100,000. In Charnwood (the Loughborough area) we are currently not at this level of infection and will thus stay at level one. However, unlike Nottingham, we in Loughborough are not yet seeing a downturn in virus numbers. While we are currently at 151 cases per 100,000. But this is up by double in a week. The national average of increases is to double every two weeks; this puts us in Loughborough on a trajectory twice as bad as the UK average.

It would only take two weeks on this current trajectory for Loughborough to be put on a level two alert level (with the closure of pubs and bars to come with it).

The PM also outlined today more funding for the areas on level two and three alerts, for enforcement of the rules. Just yesterday three students in Norwich were fined £30,000 for hosting a party which was in breach of such rules (full story on the main Tab.com page); so it is clear that local authorities are cracking down hard on students.

In response to the PM’s announcement in the House of Commons today, Exeter MP Ben Bradshaw (Labour) asked a question on behalf of students: “In university cities… that have a COVID spike in student accommodation but not yet significant community spread…what is his [Johnson’s] strategy for containing those outbreaks..?”, to which the PM replied “The differentiation between students and other members of the public is often overdone, students are playing a heroic role in containing the virus where they can by following the guidance… I thank them very much for what they are doing and hope they continue in that way.”