Tonight the Prime Minister has announced that we must go into a national lockdown.
This is a hugely regrettable position but is absolutely necessary with the rise in the number of cases we are seeing and the possibility of the NHS being overwhelmed.
Summary: what you can and cannot do during the national lockdown
You must stay at home. The single most important action we can all take is to stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives.
You should follow this guidance immediately. The law will be updated to reflect these new rules.
You must not leave, or be outside of your home except where necessary. You may leave the home to:
- shop for basic necessities, for you or a vulnerable person
- go to work, or provide voluntary or charitable services, if you cannot reasonably do so from home
- exercise with your household (or support bubble) or one other person, this should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area.
- meet your support bubble or childcare bubblewhere necessary, but only if you are legally permitted to form one
- seek medical assistance or avoid injury, illness or risk of harm (including domestic abuse)
- attend education or childcare - for those eligible
Colleges, primary and secondary schools will remain open only for vulnerable children and the children of critical workers. All other children will learn remotely until February half term. Early Years settings remain open.
Higher Education provision will remain online until mid February for all except future critical worker courses.
If you do leave home for a permitted reason, you should always stay local in the village, town, or part of the city where you live. You may leave your local area for a legally permitted reason, such as for work.
If you are clinically extremely vulnerable you should only go out for medical appointments, exercise or if it is essential. You should not attend work
- You cannot leave your home to meet socially with anyone you do not live with or are not in a support bubble with (if you are legally permitted to form one).
- You may exercise on your own, with one other person, or with your household or support bubble.
- You should not meet other people you do not live with, or have formed a support bubble with, unless for a permitted reason.
- Stay 2 metres apart from anyone not in your household.
As the Prime Minister concluded, the weeks ahead will be the hardest yet but we are now entering the last phase of the struggle. The Government is confident that by the middle of February the top for priority groups for the vaccine will have received their first dose (all care home residents and carers, everyone over 70, all front line NHS and social care workers and those who are very clinically vulnerable). If this target is reached and the virus is brought back under control then the Government will look to scale measures back then.
Full guidance can be found here.
Essex County Council’s key services information
Essex County Council has given an update on how it’s services will be affected over the coming weeks...
🌳 Essex Country Parks such as Great Notley and Cressing Temple Barns will remain open for the benefit of residents, including public conveniences. Some cafes will be closed even for takeaways.
♻️ Recycling centres remain open but residents are advised to only visit if items cannot be safely stored at home. Please use kerbside collection services wherever possible.
🚌 Public transport will continue but please follow the public health guidelines and only for essential trips.
📚 Libraries will be closed for book borrowing but online services will continue. Some sites will offer emergency usage of computer services for those without access elsewhere.
♿️ Blue Badge Assessments and Essex Registration Services will continue but marriage and civil partnership services will only take place in exceptional circumstances.
👉 For the full list and for more information please visit: https://www.essex.gov.uk/what-the-restrictions-in-your-area-mean-for-yo…