Government could put neighbouring Milton Keynes town into Tier Two with 24 hours notice

Milton Keynes' neighbouring town of Northampton is teetering on the brink of a ban on households mixing indoors.
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Positive tests have more than quadrupled in Northamptonshire over the last month, while the infection rate in both Northampton itself is fast approaching 200 per week per 100,000 people.

This is on a par with the statistics which saw Midlands neighbours Coventry recently elevated into tier two of the Government's National Covid Alert system.

Northants officials say they will not seek to have the alert level raised in but admit the decision may not be in their hands as Department of Health and Joint Biosecurity Centre staff continue to study daily data.

Covid cases are worryingly high in NorthamptonCovid cases are worryingly high in Northampton
Covid cases are worryingly high in Northampton

If the government does decide to take action, there could be less than 24 hours notice to the town.

Public Health Director Lucy Wightman wrote to parents ahead of the half-term school holiday reminding them that reducing contact with others is the best way to reduce transmission of the virus and reduce the risk of likely increase in hospital admissions and pressure on the NHS as winter approaches.

Meanwhile Northampton Borough Council leader Jonathan Nunn said he didn't think the town should go into tier two but would "not be surprised" if the Joint Biosecurity Centre thought otherwise.

Numerous recommendations have been made by Northamptonshire County Council to combat the spread of the virus, on top of the national restrictions. These include only visiting care home residents and hospital patients in extreme circumstances, no sleepovers, socialising outside where possible, no car-sharing, not to watch sport and more.

Director of public health Lucy Wightman has urged Northants residents to stick to the rules to prevent government intervention.