The meeting also discussed about the possibility to put Birmingham into Tier 4 before Christmas.
On Tuesday, the Gold Command hold a meeting. The main theme discussed was the possibility to put Birmingham into Tier 4 before Christmas. Moreover, they also considered a nationwide lockdown straight after.
The Gold Command meeting
Gold Command meetings include top health officials, politicians and local leaders to consider how to contain the virus in an area.
Yesterday, a Gold Command meeting discussed plans to put Birmingham into Tier 4. Actually, the city is in Tier 3 but it could be under heavier restrictions before Christmas.
One source of the meeting said the situation is developing quickly. So, for this reason, they need to respond at the same pace. The source also added: “It’s more likely that other parts of England could be put into Tier 4 from Boxing Day”.
However, other sources in the meeting also revealed that they eventually decided that they could delay the drastic move for now.
Moreover, on Saturday, the Cabinet has previously discussed about the possibility to put the whole country into the highest tier. But ministers decided to focus initially on London and the South East, where cases of the new variant are highest.
Now, the Government is once again considering imposing a national Tier 4 lockdown after Christmas. The new strain of Coronavirus is spreading more and more rapidly and it is essential to curb it.
A possible post-Christmas lockdown
An announcement on a post-Christmas lockdown could come already today.
In view of this possibility, the political world was divided. Infact, a group of people in Whitehall wants new restrictions to kick in across the UK as early as Boxing Day. On the other hand, many politicians in Government are pushing for it to be delayed by a few days to avoid more travel chaos.
Moreover, Andy Burnham, Greater Manchester Mayor, was very critical of the regulations in force. He claimed another national lockdown post-Christmas was “not inevitable”, if the existing restrictions worked. Ath the same time, he warned: “We might just be facing now the most dangerous moment of this pandemic. We’re all thinking about closing down, signing off… but we’re not in that position this year. There are real risks out there”.
Public health chiefs of North East warned the new strain was “very likely” to have reached the region already. They said: “While there is no clear evidence that the new strain is yet spreading in the North East as it is in Kent and the South East, it is very likely already to be present.”
So, for this reason, on Thursday there will be a North East Gold Command meeting to discuss about the eventual plans. However, regional leaders do not believe that case rates are high enough to be put into Tier 4.