Brighton and Hove leaders reject imposition of Tier 2 restrictions

There were 237 confirmed cases last week

After meeting with public health officials, Brighton and Hove leaders have decided additional restrictions to fight the spread of coronavirus are not presently necessary in the region.

Brighton and Hove is currently under Tier 1, the most basic level of restrictions, imposed nationally.

Despite a recent rise in cases, the figures appear to be relatively stable, and officials have rejected the imposition of Tier 2 restrictions, which would include the curbing of inter-household mixing, and further restrictions on the hospitality industry.

Brighton’s cases are reported to be at 83.2 per 100,000 people, compared to 424.7 per 100,000 in Manchester

From October 9th to October 16th, there were 237 confirmed cases in the area, almost matching that of the week before (243). The student demographic has been identified as a large contributor to the influx seen this autumn, with 15-24 year olds making up 62 per cent of positive cases this month.

Labour MP for Kemptown, Lloyd Russell-Moyle, told The Argus: “There’s a feeling the numbers at the university might be under, not over-reported, but we are not the highest in the South East and it seems very positive”.

This comes after reports last week of Sussex students struggling to access testing for coronavirus. The University of Sussex has stated it will do everything it can to protect the health of students and the city.

A map of confirmed coronavirus cases from 8-15 October. Student areas appear to be affected the most.

At the meeting on Monday (October 19th) to discuss the situation in Brighton and Hove, Director of Public Health, Alistair Hill stated that the city was at a “tipping point”, regarding the spread of coronavirus in the area.

Subsequently, the possibility of imposing Tier 2 restrictions was discussed, however the idea was unanimously voted down.

Peter Kyle, Labour MP for Hove and Portslade, told The Argus: “I don’t think the government understands cities like Brighton and Hove and the tier system is so blunt as to be pretty useless when judging the challenges that Brighton faces.

“Most Covid-positive cases are very highly localised within one or two parts of the city, a city-wide response forced on us by central government wouldn’t reflect that reality.”

Green MP for Brighton Pavilion, Caroline Lucas, was also in agreement with the rejection of Tier 2 restrictions. She told The Argus: “The city has been brilliant over the past few months, with businesses and the community pulling together to help each other while staying safe, and if this spirit continues and people stay vigilant, I hope we can stay in Tier 1.”