Restrictions to be eased

Restrictions to be eased

After Greater Manchester leaders urged the government to review the regional Covid-19 rules on 20th August, restrictions in Wigan Borough will be eased and residents will now need to follow national guidelines.

Wigan Borough’s new infection rate has remained very low in comparison to neighbouring areas, so rules restricting certain businesses to reopen and mixing of households are set to be lifted.

This means from 26th August, the current Covid-19 restrictions will be eased in Wigan Borough and other parts of Greater Manchester following calls from leaders across the region. 

Following a steady decline in positive cases in the region, Greater Manchester council leaders and the Mayor called on the government to remove the tougher restrictions introduced on July 31st earlier this week.

The announcement means more businesses will be allowed to reopen across the region, with the exception of Oldham where transmission rates continue to be high. In Wigan Borough rules restricting visitors to residents’ homes will also be eased – bringing Wigan in line with the rest of the country.

The Leader of Wigan Council, Councillor David Molyneux, thanked residents for doing their bit to reduce the spread of the virus. saying: “I’d like to thank our residents for being responsible, patient and kind throughout the pandemic. I know it hasn’t been easy but by working together and following the rules we’ve managed to keep our loved ones safe.

“I know the tighter restrictions have frustrated many of our residents who felt them unfair, especially since our rates have been consistently low. I shared their frustration and have been working closely with the Mayor to ensure that those concerns were heard and acted upon. I’m pleased that the government has listened and reversed their decision to impose rules on the whole region rather than making decisions on a case by case basis.

“However, it is important that we continue to act responsibly as the restrictions start to ease, by following social distancing guidelines, washing our hands, wearing a face covering where appropriate and wiping surfaces to avoid tougher restrictions in the future.”

Tighter lockdown rules were reintroduced across Greater Manchester and parts of northern England on 31st July following an increase in Covid-19 cases.

The latest announcement means, residents in Wigan Borough can now:

  • Socialise in groups of up to two households indoors
  • Stay overnight at somebody else’s home but must try to social distance
  • Book close contact services such as facials and brow or eyelash treatments
  • Visit bowling alleys, roller rinks, soft play centres and casinos.

To keep infection rates down and to avoid tighter restrictions being implemented again, residents are being asked to be responsible and to continue following the national restrictions.

Using local data and intelligence, Wigan Council’s public health team will be closely monitoring infection rates across the borough, taking local action where ‘hotspots’ appear to prevent a rise in cases.

Find further information about the current restrictions (external link).

Posted on Friday 21st August 2020
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