PUBS, casinos and bowling alleys are among the businesses that must shut in Tier three areas, including London and parts of Essex and Hertfordshire.
Health secretary Matt Hancock today confirmed that these areas will be next to go into Tier three in an update in the House of Commons this afternoon.
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The new restrictions will come into force from 12.01am on Wednesday.
Pubs, cafes and restaurants must remain shut in Tier three areas except for takeaway and delivery services, and households cannot mix except in public places outdoors.
It also means that indoor theatres and museums will soon be banned for Londoners and some people in Essex and Hertfordshire.
But gyms, hairdressers and beauty salons are allowed to stay open, along with non-essential shops.
Outdoor tourism and entertainment venues can also stay open, as well as spas, saunas and steam rooms.
Which areas must close in Tier three areas?
THIS is the list of businesses that must close in Tier 3 areas currently.
- Pubs and restaurants (unless operating takeaway, delivery or drive-thru)
- Bowling alleys
- Skating rinks
- Bingo halls
- Soft play areas
- Museums and galleries
- Live sport venues
- Amusement arcades
- Laser quest and escape rooms
- Hotels and Airbnbs
Indoor attractions at mostly outdoor entertainment venues must also close. This includes indoor attractions within:
- Safari parks
- Wildlife reserves
- Visitor attractions at farms
It comes after Mr Hancock warned that cases are doubling every seven days in some areas, and a new variant of the virus has emerged in the south east of England.
Tier three is the toughest set of restrictions applied to "very high" risk areas. London, Essex and Hertfordshire are currently in Tier two.
Manchester, Sheffield, Rotherham, Doncaster and Barnsley are already on the list of high risk Tier three areas.
The next review of the tier system will be on 23 December.
Mr Hancock said this afternoon: "When the virus is growing exponentially, there is not a moment to spare.
"Hospitals across the countries of Essex and Kent are already under pressure, and we know the doubling of cases will be mirrored in hospital admissions, and it only takes a few doublings for the NHS to be overwhelmed."
The full list of places going into Tier three from Wednesday are:
- Greater London
- Epping Forest
- Castle Point
- Braintree & Chelmsford
- Thurrock and South End on Sea Borough councils
- Watford and the three river local authority
What businesses can remain open in Tier 3?
THIS is the list of businesses that can stay open in Tier 3 areas currently.
- Non-essential shops
- Beauty salons
- Tattoo parlours
- Nail salons
- Saunas and steam rooms
- Massage parlours
- Tanning salons
- Outdoor tourism and entertainment venues
- Outdoor cinemas, theatres and concert venues (but must close at 11pm other than for the purposes of concluding a performance which began before 10pm)
- Outdoor funfairs
- Leisure and sports facilities (but group exercise classes should not go ahead)
- Community centres and halls
- Recycling and waste centres
- Car parks
- Public toilets
The announcement from Mr Hancock comes after London Mayor Sadiq Khan revealed there had been a 75% surge in cases in the city.
Speaking earlier today on Sky News, Mr Khan: "It's possible because we've seen over the last few days a big increase in the virus."
London’s hospital occupancy now stands at 93% too, with MPs worried about the impact in January, one of the busiest times of the year.
The new tier locations in England were unveiled on November 26 by Matt Hancock, with a staggering 99% of the country plunged into Tier two or Tier three.
Mr Hancock had previously said he was "particularly concerned" about the number of coronavirus cases in London, Kent and Essex.
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