Christmas and the start of 2021 is going to be ‘tough’, warns Hancock

Matt Hancock has said that Christmas and the beginning of 2021 is going to be ‘tough’.

Speaking at a Downing Street conference, England’s Health Secretary said: “This Christmas and the start of 2021 is going to be tough. The new variant makes everything much harder because it spreads so much faster.

“But we mustn’t give up now, we know that we can control this virus, we know we can get through this together, we’re going to get through it by suppressing the virus until a vaccine can make us safe.”

He added: “I believe that everybody will do what is needed to keep themselves and others safe, especially this Christmas, and I know from the bottom of my heart that there are brighter skies ahead.”

It comes as a number of areas in England will be moved to Tier 4 on Boxing Day.

Speaking at a Downing Street press conference, Mr Hancock said: “From 00.01 on Boxing Day Sussex, Oxfordshire, Suffolk, Norfolk and Cambridgeshire, those parts of Essex not yet in Tier 4, Waverley in Surrey and Hampshire including Portsmouth and Southampton but with the exception of the New Forest will all be escalated to Tier 4.”

Bristol, Gloucesterhsire, Somerset, Swindon, Isle of Wight, New Forest, Northants, Cheshire and Warrington will go to Tier 3.

And Cornwall and Herefordshire will move into Tier 2.

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