Coronavirus: New restrictions in force for parts of West Midlands

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A Covid-19 social distancing public notice on a street in Birmingham

image copyrightEPA

image captionThe new restrictions affect about 1.6 million people across Birmingham, Sandwell and Solihull

New lockdown measures have come into force in the West Midlands after the number of coronavirus cases rose.

People in Birmingham, Sandwell and Solihull are banned from meeting others who are not part of their household or support bubble, in homes or gardens.

The restrictions affect about 1.6 million people and run alongside wider rules which

came into force on Monday.

The council leader for Birmingham said on Friday the virus had not “weakened”, calling it “relentless”.

West Midlands mayor Andy Street warned people they must comply with new restrictions or face even tougher measures.

“We will use these restrictions, look at how the numbers move, and if they are not sufficient, we might have to go further,” Mr Street said on Sunday.

“Everybody now has to comply with these to give us the best chance.”

image copyrightPA Media
image captionStudents at Birmingham City University arrived for the start of term on Monday
Under the new rules, people are banned from meeting others who are not in their household or support bubble, indoors or in private gardens.  

Birmingham City Council said people could still go out to shops, restaurants and other venues, in a maximum group of six from more than one household, but told people to be “vigilant”.

Council leader Ian Ward said data showed “the infection rate has risen mainly due to social interactions, particularly private household gatherings”.

Figures show the rate of cases per 100,000 in Birmingham to the week to 11 September was 82, for Solihull the figure was 71.2 and Sandwell stood at 64.2.

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