Prime Minister orders strict curbs on daily life to slow spread of coronavirus

PM Boris Johnson

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has tonight (March 23) announced  ‘national emergency’ measures to slow down the spread of coronavirus.

In a speech to the nation the PM said gatherings of more than two people – excluding those who live together – would be dispersed and people will only be able to go out to exercise alone, shop for essentials, travelling to necessary work that cannot be done at home, travelling to help a vulnerable person and picking up essential medical goods.

Police will have the powers to enforce these rules. There will be fines for flouting the rules.

All non-essential shops will close. All social gatherings, except funerals, will be halted. Parks will remain open for exercise but groups will be dispersed.

The lockdown will be reviewed in three weeks time. The PM said the measures are necessary to ‘slow the spread of the disease.’

He said: “The coronavirus is the biggest threat this country has faced for decades – and this country is not alone.

All over the world we are seeing the devastating impact of this invisible killer. From this evening I must give the British people a very simple instruction – you must stay at home. Because the critical thing we must do is stop the disease spreading between households.

That is why people will only be allowed to leave their home for the following very limited purposes:

  • shopping for basic necessities, as infrequently as possible
  • one form of exercise a day – for example a run, walk, or cycle – alone or with members of your household;
  • any medical need, to provide care or to help a vulnerable person; and
  • travelling to and from work, but only where this is absolutely necessary and cannot be done from home.

“That’s all – these are the only reasons you should leave your home. You should not be meeting friends. If your friends ask you to meet, you should say No. You should not be meeting family members who do not live in your home.

“You should not be going shopping except for essentials like food and medicine – and you should do this as little as you can. And use food delivery services where you can.

“If you don’t follow the rules the police will have the powers to enforce them, including through fines and dispersing gatherings.”

As of 9am today (March 23) a total of 83,945 people have been tested, of which 77,295 were confirmed negative and 6,650 were confirmed positive.

As of 1pm, 335 patients in the UK who tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) have died.

In Kent 64 people who have been tested have ben diagnosed positive and 15 in Medway.

In Thanet there have been cases including in Westgate, Birchington Vale, a staff member at Saga and a parent of a Chatham & Clarendon pupil. There are an unconfirmed number of Covid-19 patients at QEQM Hospital.

Thanet coronavirus: Useful numbers, groups and shop deliveries list


  1. This was investible to happen people have to take heed and help to stop this deadly viris young and old including teenagers and young adults. If people in Thanet care about people instead of themselves that today’s generation think of others.

  2. I’m suspicious.

    The government say ”As of 1pm, 335 patients in the UK who tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) have died.”

    Earlier in the week at one of the press briefings they mentioned some muddled-speak about this implying that true numbers may be higher.

    Is this why they are not testing everyone; to hide the true number of deaths?

    If like me you take what is said literally, and examine exactly what is said, and what is implied and or unsaid, it makes interesting and scary reading.

  3. I wonder scaremongering i.dont think it is health experts who know what they are trying to do to save lives of the ignorance of the people whom they think they know best should stop scaremongering themselves.they are walking about without a care in the world for others maybe they might catch it themselves think twice about condemning others who are doing there best to save lives.get over it because you don’t like being told what to do.

  4. To be honest we dont know how many people from thanet have it as they arent testing everyone. The advice is if someone is showing symptoms in a household than all in that household self isolate for 14 days. But that person showing symptoms isnt than counted . If think only people needing the hospitals are counted.

  5. It’s pretty clear who has died of C19 or its complications.
    What no one in this country knows is how many people actually have C19, because there is little testing.

  6. As a single male, in the upper end of my eighth decade, with two life threatening lung diseases, a heart condition and who is visually impaired, I used to eat several times a week for years at a small café, which cleaned the table after every customer. Chances of catching the virus there, minimal!

    The café has been shut down, so I am forced to buy Ready Meals at supermarkets, where my chances of getting the virus are by extension, very much greater because the Shopping Trollys, and Baskets are not being properly sterilised after every use by customers! Yes, ASDA Ramsgate, and the TESCO store on the Manston Road, do have someone haphazardly spraying some Trolly’s but not the Baskets as far as I could tell! If this is being replicated over the country, then its no wonder thousands of people are being infected!

    Our little café was used by many pensioners, some daily, who will now be forced like me, to go to supermarkets for Ready Meals with a good chance of getting infected! Supermarket Trolly’s and Baskets are ideal for spreading the virus, from one person to another, as they are not being properly cleaned after each use! ASDA Ramgate has someone using a spray indifferently, on and off, as is the Manston Road Tesco! I have written to Craig Mackinlay MP for South Thanet, about this, but he has not got back to me with what action he has taken, to stop this obvious method of infecting people!

  7. I totally agree with other recipients that no testing has been done in the CT9 area as the ccgs are practicing post code lottery.i use Morrisons in Margate I have never seen sanitising shopping trolleys. Neither do we see steam cleaning the streets shop windows being disinfected phone boxes full of filth it seems to be done in the rest of the world it should not be about money it’s saving lives.

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