Govt to talk to Manchester and London MPs amid reports of tougher coronavirus tiers
Written by Rother Radio News on 15/10/2020
MPs in Greater Manchester and London have been invited to briefings with a government minister this morning – amid reports that both areas could be placed into a higher coronavirus tier.
Health minister Helen Whateley is going to hold a call with London MPs at 9.30am, followed by Greater Manchester MPs at 10.45am.
Local leaders including Andy Burnham will also be speaking with the government after the Joint Biosecurity Centre recommended that Manchester and Lancashire should be moved to Tier 3, the highest alert level.
This would mean households can no longer mix indoors and outdoors – with pubs and bars forced to close unless they can operate as restaurants.
Last night, government figures stressed that no final decisions have been taken, but Sky’s political editor Beth Rigby says government sources are clear that numbers in Greater Manchester and Lancashire are “bad” and some action is needed.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock is also going to address the Commons later today.
Meanwhile, it has been reported that London mayor Sadiq Khan has briefed local health officials about the moving the capital into the Tier 2 “high” category.
On Tuesday, Mr Khan told Sky News that further restrictions in London were “inevitable” in the coming days as hospital admissions and infection rates are “going in the wrong direction”.
Greater Manchester’s mayor, Andy Burnham, has expressed exasperation with the government’s approach over recent days – claiming that decisions affecting the North West have been communicated to the media first.
“We are expecting a further meeting with the PM’s team in the morning,” he tweeted.
© Sky News 2020