South Thanet MP Craig Mackinlay among group telling PM to lift all covid restrictions at end of April

Craig Mackinlay

South Thanet MP Craig Mackinlay is one of 63 MPs to sign a letter to say there would be ‘no justification’ for any legislative restrictions on public life to remain once all nine priority groups – meaning all those over 50 and those who are clinically vulnerable – have received a covid vaccination by the end of April.

The letter sent to Prime Minster Boris Johnson yesterday (February 13) is from the Covid Recovery Group – made up of Conservative MPs who opposed the UK government’s decision to introduce a second period of lockdown.

In the letter the MPs say  it is a national priority to open schools by March 8 and pubs and restaurants should be opened – covid secure – by Easter.

The group say that by March 8 people in the top four risk groups will have received vaccination and as they “account for about 88% of deaths and about 55% of hospitalisations”  remaining restrictions should be “proportionate to the harm Covid is by then capable of causing.”

The top 4 priority cohorts include care home residents and staff, frontline health and social care workers, anyone aged 70 or over and people who are clinically extremely vulnerable.

The letter says: “Covid is a serious disease and we must control it. However, just like covid, lockdowns and restrictions cause immense social and health damage and have a huge impact on people’s livelihoods.

“The vaccine gives us immunity from covid, but it must also give us permanent immunity from covid-related lockdowns and restrictions.”

It adds: “Your roadmap must demonstrate how the vaccination roll out translates into a return to normal life.”

The group say they have concerns about businesses in leisure and personal care, events, weddings and care home visits.

They say that once the nine priority groups have been vaccinated this would account for those that represent 99% of covid deaths and 80% of covid hospitalisations.

The group end by saying: “The vaccine gives us immunity from covid but it must also give us permanent immunity from covid-related lockdowns and restrictions.”

The roadmap, due to be announced in the week of February 22, will lay out how government plans to ease the current national restrictions with came into force on January 5.

In January the PM said: “We will set out the results of the review and publish our plan for taking the country out of lockdown,” although he added this will be dependent on the vaccination programme going to plan and the rate of hospital cases and deaths being reduced.

It is planned for a gradual phasing to reduce restrictions but the first step will be reopening schools with an earliest target date of March 8. Economic and social restriction easing will follow.

People in the UK vaccinated up to and including 12 February are:

First dose: 14,556,827

Second dose: 534,869

The government has committed to offering the vaccine to all those over 50 by May and all adults by September.

However, these target dates are for the first dose of the vaccine not both doses, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab  told Sky News it would be: “the first milestone towards the wider plan to get 99 percent of those at risk of dying vaccinated with a first dose by the end of April, and then everyone in the country… by the autumn.”

The Estimated R number for the UK is now between 0.7 to 0.9 . The R rate is the number of people that one infected person will pass on a virus to, on average. If the R value is higher than one, then the number of cases increases.

But if the R number is lower the disease will eventually stop spreading, because not enough new people are being infected to sustain the outbreak.

The UK seven-day rolling rate as of 9 February of positive tests was 158.7 per 100,000 people, with positive tests down 27% on the previous seven days.

In Thanet the positive test seven day rolling rate is 109.2. Government data shows positive test rates were down 52% on the preceding seven days. This is a vast reduction on rates on December 20 which stood at 639 per 100,000.

There were 178 patients in East Kent Hospitals with coronavirus on February 9 and of these 28 coronavirus patients were in hospital beds with a mechanical ventilator.

There have been 414 deaths in Thanet of people who had a positive covid test within 28 days.

Next phase of vaccinations for over 65s and clinically vulnerable begin tomorrow


  1. But then he is factually incorrect as no more than 537K have had both jabs so 14 Million still need a second jab

    • Mackinley is an unadulterated dumbass who seeks to serve himself and his interests over the health and interests of those he is elected to serve. Anyone who thinks full open in April is clever must have been comatose in September last year.

  2. He must know this will adversely affect his own constituency. Due to its socioeconomic deprivation, South Thanet has been hit disproportionately hard during the pandemic. The man’s a menace.

    • Ditto that Simon, not only a menace to Thanet where over 400 people have died due to the virus, but if he has his way many more like me, who are highly clinically vulnerable will be put in danger! In the USA nearly half a million people have died and many of those needlessly, because Trump openly dissuaded efforts to prevent the spread of the disease, why? Because his businesses rely on footfall, hotels, casino’s, golf courses etc, so he wanted people to continue to use them! Is the same applying to Mackinlay and his ilk, do they want their businesses to re-open and to Hell with the consequences!

  3. Probably most people who have had their first vaccination will not have had the second, which is the one which will give them maximum immunity. Mackinlay is conveniently ignoring this fact in a rush to get people out and spending again and no doubt thereby lining both his pockets and those of his cronies. He’s arrogantly ignoring medical advice. Once again, he proves he’s not fit to represent a vulnerable area like Thanet.

  4. It is a very desirable position and I’m sure supported by many. There is much this news report does not mention about these MP’s demands, for instance whether they have taken into account the need for a second vaccine before best available cover is in place, how to classify those who have not been vaccinated, the future use of face masks, the situation at the borders where travellers may be importing the virus from overseas and more. This campaign is going to be more talk than action, hopefully the Government ministers will recognise the need for a balanced return to normal and not a mad dash to reopen. If anyone is in doubt, in today’s news, New Zealand which has done so well with protecting it’s people has imposed a lockdown on it’s largest city following diagnosis of coronavirus.

  5. I really am speechless.
    He is a like a wonky compass that points true north 180 degrees out of true.
    Has he not seen the reports from QEQM? Does he not understand that 120,000 people have died before their time?
    Everyone fully understands that business is hurting, that many are struggling with debt, worry, and disintegrating mental health, but we also know what scientists are saying about easing lockdown.
    Yes, science has brought forth 2 useable vaccines and in some places (Thanet),vaccination has gone well. But this is not true in some parts of his constituency and only some of the population have been vaccinated once. As I have stated a number of times.15 million jabs done,115 million to go, that’s the scale of it. A good start but nothing more.
    Let me make this clear Craig, unless everyone is vaccinated, no one is safe, not even you.
    When vaccinations reach a million a day nationwide and many more vaccination centres are in place and operating in East Kent (not just vaguely promised), then we can talk about easing the lockdown. Easing Craig, not removing it wholesale.

  6. I’m just hoping that by the time of the next general election, Nigel Farage will have formed the anti covid party and we can all vote for that…

  7. all I want is to be able to see my husband in his dementia care home, many months now since I have seen him,this lock down has caused so many problems for people with memory loss as they rely on routine

    • This virus has lead to all sorts of privations and hardships.
      But let’s not lose sight of the fact that in the UK almost twice as many people have died of CV as civilians died in WW2. Over 120,000 and still going up.
      With a bit of luck, if the vaccines work, you’ll be able to see your husband again before too long.

  8. I would dearly love to see my children and grandchildren again (over a year, and counting). I want to take my wife out for a meal again. I hugely miss my visit to the Local, beer and chats with my mates.
    I’d love all the restrictions to cease, and everything to open up.
    But (you seem to have overlooked this point, Craig) the virus has no regard for timetables, calendars nor “road maps”. No one other than a fool would demand that by such and such a date this or that should reopen.
    The *only* indicators are infections, hospitalizations, deaths and the “R” number. Anything else, and we’ll be back to last September where infection was rising again, and has continued to do so until just a couple of weeks ago.
    Who knows? If people observe the rules; if the vaccines stop us getting ill (even better, suppress transmition) then things might open up sooner. But if (because this government’s total failure to secure our borders) a new more contagious and deadly strain gets into the country, we could be many months away from a return to anything like normality.
    Fortunately (and I say this through gritted teeth) some of the Cabinet appear to have a bit of gumption.
    Unlike our MP.

  9. Typical Mr Mackinley talks from his posterior with just as much effluent coming out as normal. If anybody were to turn South Thanet Red at the next election it would be him.

  10. I think restrictions will ease a little ,but we really Don’t Want another lockdown ! Let’s just play it safe please !

  11. Now is the time for South Thanet Toties to look for someone else to be the party’s candidate in the next election. It will be too late as we near the election. Either that or let’s not vote for MacKinlay on polling day. So many people think he’s a bad MP, well do something about. Other parties should also look now decent candidates to take him on.

  12. It’s not just the vaccination roll out that needs to be considered but the simple fact most of us have followed the lockdown guidelines. Who can say if an easing of the restrictions won’t lead to another wave of infections because 15m have only had the first dose? My second jab won’t be until April and even then it’s not giving 100% protection until everyone has had both doses.

    Obviously it’s been a tragedy for all whose livelihoods have been impacted on and amuch earlier lockdown in 2020 might have reduced the appalling death-toll but,move too quickly must be an ill-advised decision. The slight easing over Christmas caused many deaths, let’s not see the total rise again or those of us who’ve stayed safe and followed the guidelines may pay the price.

  13. Many people will never vote again for any MP who advocated the hugely destructive lockdowns and tier systems. All causing more deaths than the virus itself. And for a virus that’s never been isolated, with experimental rushed-to-the market jabs showing serious side effects and deaths world-wide. And a survival rate of well over 99 per cent for the virus (yet to be isolated). This is way above petty old school politics, and people across the world are saying similar. Never have so medical and scientific experts been censored in the mainstream. Never has weaponised behavioural psychology been used so effectively to frighten populations. But many millions see through this, and that’s the good news. Some beg for their imprisonment. But many others don’t and know how to look after their own immune systems very effectively.

    • Yes,Democrat.One section of society has been silenced forever.The dead.120,000 sentient human beings cannot speak anymore.
      What would they say? Do you think that they, based on their experience of covid,might conclude that personal freedom ‘trumps’everything else?
      That every man or woman is an island? We are not our brother’s or sister’s keeper?
      If patriotism and democracy,Democrat, mean anything,they mean that we are part of a big family, where some of us should hold back,for the benefit of all.
      Craig Mackinlay stands for self,the cult of the individual.He also stands for social Darwinism,which holds that there are exceptional people, and common or mundane people.Big government,the NHS,a social safety net, are all antipathetic to the efficiency of business,wealth creation,and the lives of exceptional people.Exceptional people count,the common or mundane people either don’t count or count for less.If this is not so, why is income and wealth distribution so unequal.
      Craig will probably get elected again,because there many believers in the exceptional people doctrine, and do not believe in community and fare shares.
      Fare shares does not mean everyone is reduced to the same level of income, instead it means that everyone has a stake in society and enough income + wealth to live a good life.If you want to live an exceptional life, you have to work hard and more importantly, be lucky.

      • George Nokes is absolutely right.

        Tories do not believe in providing everyone with good housing,education and healthcare. They despise socialism.

        Why on earth does anyone other than their friends and relations vote for them? For years they’ve been doing their best to trash the NHS, social housing provision and the welfare state in general

  14. There’s a programme about anti-vaxxers on BBC1 at 7.35 this evening.

    “Some beg for their imprisonment”? We are not imprisoned.

  15. I’m glad to see in comments Craig is deeply unpopular and people see straight through he. He is a fool. It’s him and his ilk that have got us in this mess. If we had taken this seriously at the start tens of thousands more would have survived and the economy would be far better off. Other countries have proved this. Putting the economy first is what has damaged it so much.

  16. Please stop spreading your lies, Democrat.
    It is not the case that more people have died due to lockdowns than C19 itself. It is not true that the recovery rate us better than 99%.
    It is not true that there are serious side effects and deaths world wide as a consequence of vaccination.
    It is not true that scientists have been censored in main stream media.
    In fact there is not one shred of truth in your posting; there never has been.
    I’m surprised that Kathy Bailes allows this nonsense to be peddled on her platform. I’m all for freedom of speech, but postings such as those made by Democrat are positively dangerous.

  17. Ending lockdown sooner rather than later is not exactly a vote winner on here is it, Craig? Seems the people of Thanet prefer to live rather than follow the advice of you and your mates in the “Covid Recovery Group” when back in November you said we were over the worst and another lockdown was not needed. Still, money talks and 120,000+ dead isn’t as important to you as your 50p Brexit coin campaign is it?

  18. Reads like a well orchestrated hard left faction of the Labour party especially its leadership who want everyone under house arrest until they sign up to vote Labour.
    Most of the ‘Experts’ are using very dodgy figures and other having rules for others whilst flouting them themselves.
    Having experienced QEQM facilities I will never use it again.

  19. I’d like to know why he is hell bent on putting peoples lives at risk.
    We would all like to come out of lockdown but it has to be at the right time from clinical evidence.
    What a Pratt

    • sorry for the spelling errors.
      Dear and so thoughtful Mr MacKinlay MP please Foxtrot Oscar. Please take that other useless Thanet North MP with you as you go.

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