Prime Minister announces new restrictions to curb growth of Covid-19

PM Boris Johnson

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced new measures in England to try and curb the growing rate of Covid-19 infections and the rising R rate – how many people a carrier can spread the virus to.

Saying the government is attempting to “balance saving lives with protecting jobs and livelihoods.”

Following a conference yesterday (September 21) by England’s chief medical officer and the chief scientific adviser Professor Chris Witty and the  Sir Patrick Vallance which revealed infections could reach 50,000 a day by the middle of October and 200 deaths a day by November if the growing infection rate is not curbed, the PM announced new restrictions.

The PM said: “I want to stress that this is by no means a return to the full lockdown of March. We are not issuing a general instruction to stay at home.

“We will ensure that schools, colleges and universities stay open – because nothing is more important than the education, health and well-being of our young people. We will ensure that businesses can stay open in a Covid-compliant way.

“However, we must take action to suppress the disease.”

The latest rules are:

Office workers who can work from home to do so. If homeworking is not possible, such as in retail and construction, people are urged to continue to go to work.

From Thursday (September 24) all pubs, bars and restaurants to operate table service only and to close at 10pm. The same will apply to takeaways – though deliveries can continue after 10pm.

Face covering use extended to staff in retail, all users of taxis and private hire vehicles and staff and customers in hospitality venues except when seated to eat and drink

Tightening the ‘rule of six’ with only 15 guests allowed for wedding ceremonies and receptions. The limit of 30 for funerals remains unchanged.

Cancellation of the October 1 reopening date for business conferences, exhibitions and large sporting events.

In retail, leisure, tourism and other sectors, Covid-secure guidelines will become legal obligations. Businesses will be fined and could be closed if they breach the rules.

Enforcement  will be increased with extra resources for police and the ability to call in the Army if needed. Fines for breaching face covering and gathering of six rules will increase to £200 for the first offence.

Shielding guidance remains the same – the PM said people do not need to shield except in local lock down areas.

The PM said the rules are likely to be in force for six months.

He added: ” If all these actions fail to bring the R rate under 1 we reserve the right for significantly greater restrictions. We are only able to avoid this if the new measures work and our behaviour changes.”

Saying the rules are likely to remain for six months he added: “This virus is a fact of our lives and I must tell the House and the country that our fight against it will continue.”

The UK’s coronavirus alert level has been raised from 3 to 4, meaning transmission is “high or rising exponentially.”


  1. Go to work if you can, no stay at home if you can. Keep the kids at home, no send them back. Close everything, no open it back up again, no-semi-close it again now. All clear? Good, because it is all your fault for not following my not remotely contradictory & confusing statements that this thing has gone up again & nothing to do with our decisions. Anyway, a stitch in times saves nine, rule of six, circuit breaking-any more silly catchphrases & buzzwords Dominic? Cripes old beans.

  2. June-it’s your civic duty to go to the pub
    July-go back to the office & buy coffee on the way
    August-eat out, we’ll pay half
    September-this is your final chance to stop spreading the virus

  3. Great news regarding the mandatory mask requirement for shop workers (I’ll feel much safer in supermarkets now), also the compulsory table service in restaurants and pubs.

    • Its mandatory peter for customers but only about 75% are following the rules !
      I was sitting in the car park of a large supermarket recently waiting to collect my partner , i was counting those walking in and out without masks , some WHOLE families just walking in , and no masks ,and this is people of all ethnicities, And at the door the security didn,nt remind anyone ! This mask wearing must be everyone , but some just don,t get it sadly.

      • I know… I’ve mostly stuck to smaller shops since the pandemic, that way I can see at a glance whether customers and/or workers are wearing masks.

        I was on a bus last week, and a young woman in her 20s had her mask dangling under her chin: as the bus was busy, an elderly woman (wearing a mask) sat next to this young woman! I only hope she hasn’t been murdered due to one person’s selfishness.

        • Yes smaller shops feel safer , you can see where everyone is , Iceland in Broadstairs and the coop too feel safe , lidl and aldi really don,t as the shelving goes up too high , isles are narrow too , worst place we found is B & M at westwood , couldnt wait to leave !

      • I don’t see why people shopping should wear masks when people in pubs and restaurants don’t need to. After all, most visits to a shop to buy something are far briefer that a visit to a pub or restaurant.

        • Because (a) they’re moving about, and (b) most shopping is essential – unlike pubs or restaurants that are through personal choice, therefore those with underlying health problems (such as my mother) can avoid them. What they SHOULD do though is insist that people in pubs/restaurants wear masks when walking about (ie. arriving/toilets/paying/leaving). I always where a mask if going to the loo in a pub, despite the weird looks!

          • Oops… just heard that we now must wear masks in pubs and restaurants when not seated! A wise move that should’ve been compulsory earlier.

          • Why are libraries closed when it’s okay for pubs to be open?

            The illogical decisions of the government make it clear that they’re more interested in money than public health.

  4. It’s not the end of the world. It might actually mean that communities blighted by the ‘night time economy’, which is often an excuse to pour vast quantities of alcohol down the throats of the already inebriated, may get some peace and quiet.
    To be frank, if the UK economy can only stand up by selling office workers sandwiches and selling half price drinks to millennials, we really are in deep doo doo.
    From being the workshop of the world, we are now reduced to transferring dodgy money for gangsters and autocrats, while delivering a substandard life for most of Britain. Perhaps now is the time to really be ‘Global Britain’ and to stop relying on a get rich, casino economy, to pull us through the hard times to come.

    • I totally agree, george nokes. Will NO-ONE in the media make that point.
      We once had a serious manufacturing base and a productive agriculture.
      But there has been a policy for decades to quietly let these go and import the lot.
      Even now, with Brexit due to make EU food imports much more expensive, the plan is to do a deal with the USA to import poorer quality food from them.
      Anything but have a viable economy right here! The big money is invested in trading stocks and shares, NOT in making anything.
      So we end up with an impoverished economy involving impoverished people selling each other sandwiches and beer.

    • Yep, many low earners will be have been in jobs propped up by the tax payer in terms of tax credits in all their forms. The loss of these jobs would arguably be a good thing and hopefully encourage the creation of real productive work that doesn’t create a situation where workers have nothing to strive toward.
      Have a look at the likes of, and play with the the numbers. I have tenants who work the 16 hour a week minimum yet once all the tax credits etc are added in they end up with a notional pre tax income of around 24k now that the local housing allowance and the covid bonus are added in and they’ve lost 20% of their income via furlough. Add on the other entitlements that these benefits trigger and you have large numbers of people for whom there is no incentive to be self sufficient. Yet as a nation we’ve declared creating such jobs to be a “jobs miracle”. Utter economic madness especiallly when it brings in migrant labour, who require access to the health , education and housing systems etc, all of which has considerable price tags attached.

  5. Amongst the local hysteria it is worth remembering there were 8 positive cases in Thanet last week out of around 144,000 residents. That’s 0.005% of the population.

    So for all the talk of murderers on the bus or rampant infections in pubs you would be hard pushed to come across anyone in Thanet who has had a positive test. Statistically, if you went out for some reason deliberately looking to get infected for a week you would probably end up disappointed.

    Even if you did, by some complete fluke, catch it then you have a 99% chance of just getting over it with no serious issues unless you are particularly elderly or have underlying health issues.

    Still, nothing like a good old panic is there?

    • And there lies the problem: people the world over have became complacent, assuming “there’s not much of it around anymore, and it’s not that dangerous anyway”. Then people have started dying again…

    • Agree entirely. Fear controls as the government behavioural unit and WHO knows. Some will probably do more damage to their immunes systems by the constant fear mongering and frenzy of who or who doesn’t wear a little mask going on in their heads. I fear for the health of retail workers being forced to wear one all day. Can’t normalise the abnormal.

    • From September 1st-


      Cases: 928

      Infection rate per 100,000: 653.9

      Deaths: 161

      Death rate: 113.4

      So yes, it has had quite a big impact on a small area & seeing the kiddies have only recently been sent back to school & in line with the rate going up everywhere expect to see the numbers start rising again soon.

  6. Those figures are the total in Thanet since the start of the pandemic. They are not since 1st September. They show that since the start of Covid there have been 928 positive tests in Thanet which is roughly 0.6% of the local population. Or to put it another way,since this whole thing started 99.4% of local people have not caught it or have been totally unaware of catching it.

    Obviously I will keep on obeying the rules, wearing a mask etc but you will see from the stats that people shouldn’t panic about “getting infected” unless they have an underlying health issue.

    Take a lesson from history. Even the most catastrophic outbreak of something similar (Spanish Flu) didn’t infect more than 30% of the world’s population and, from what we have seen so far, Covid is not even close to the severity of that.

    • Yes, up until the end of August-that is the amount of positive tests, you can also bet there are a lot of people that weren’t tested-also the entire country was shut down which saw numbers fall. Since the government decided to rush to get everything back open as soon as possible the numbers have inevitably risen & we are not having a second lockdown expect the numbers to rise significantly again.

      I doubt a lot of people have been unaware, most have likely had severe symptoms but were unable to get tested & possibly passed it onto others. Sadly the don’t worry about it because you are young & healthy narrative doesn’t wash-while the obese, elderly & unwell people are the most likely to suffer badly, or even die from it perfectly healthy young people have also been very ill & some have died from it as well-afraid if you don’t have the antibodies to fight it off then without a vaccine it is a big problem for you.

      Spanish Flu killed anywhere up to 50 million people. Black Death killed around 200 million. Our chances of not getting run over while out are pretty good, but to stop looking before & while crossing roads would be very foolhardy. The reality is any of us could catch this just from coming into contact with one person-in fact the supermarkets & other shops we visit are pumping out recirculated air which we then have to breathe in-so it only takes somebody to cough & we can become infected.

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