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Liverpool City Region Covid19 Updates
... and Important Emergency Notices ...

YOU can get daily major and interesting news updates for the Liverpool City Region on our free email news service, via signing up on:- Formby Reporter.  If you have any updates to send in or any views on the posts on here, please email us to:-News24@SouthportReporter.Com.


This page last updated on 22 February 2021


Are we ready for a road map to end Lockdown?

EVER since UK's Prime Minister, Boris Johnson's announcement on 23 March 2020, to the nation, saying:- "from this evening I must give the British people a very simple instruction; you must stay at home" we have all been longing for a return to normal. Today, Boris Johnson, has set out his:- 'road map' to bringing the nation out of lockdown, with what he says will be a:- "cautious approach" that will follow the data, not economic and political pressure. He said that:- "Our decisions will be made on the latest data at every step, and we will be cautious about this approach so that we do not undo the progress we have achieved so far and the sacrifices each and every 1 of you has made to keep yourself and others safe. Our priority has always been getting children back into School which we know is crucial for their education and wellbeing. We'll also be prioritising ways for people to reunite with loved ones safely." But will the Prime Minister strategy for safely coming out of lockdown and a roadmap to recovery really work?

The unlock roadmap's key details are a follows:-


Step 1...


8 March 2021, Schools and 1+1 recreational meetings outside.

28 March 2021, Outdoor gatherings of 2 households or rule of 6, no geographical limits.
Stay At Home legal order ends, but WFH guidance stays.

Step 2, not before 12 April 2021.


Reopening...

 Non essential retail.

 Personal care like haircuts.

 Public buildings, eg museums .

 Indoor gyms + swimming pools.

 Pubs / Restaurants Outside Only. No meal order for drinks, but must be seated.

 Self Contained accommodation, within households.

Step 3... Not before 17 May 2021.

Allowed:-

 International travel (holidays!)

 Gatherings of up to 30 outside.

 Rule of 6 or 2 households indoors, with overnight stays.

 Pubs / restaurants indoors.

 Entertainment venues, eg cinemas.

 Hotels.

 Exercise classes.

 Limited sports venues.

Step 4... Not before 21 June 2021.


 Work From Home guidance to end.

 All legal limits on social contact removed.

 Nightclubs, large performance events, live music venues reopened.

 All limits removed on weddings.

 Also by now: a full review of all social distancing measures, such as the use of masks.

But, already warnings are being aired, that this 'looks good,' but it will come at a cost and that coasting was not released within this announcement. Many commentators have picked up on this, as shockingly Boris Johnson has not given any update on what will happen with furlough, that is due to end on 30 April 2021. For many business owners, especially for those who are part of the 3 million plus:- 'Excluded,' this long plan could be the end of their businesses if help is not provided soon. Even for businesses who are getting help, the long delay could be just as problematic, especially with Brexit issues starting to hit. Sadly, all we got was Boris Johnson promising not to:- "pull the rug out" on economic support.

Reaction to Prime Minster's announcement, Liverpool City Region leaders, in a joint statement, the Local Authority Leaders, Acting Mayor of Liverpool, and Metro Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, Steve Rotheram, said:- "The Prime Minister has now set out a timetable for the whole country to return to something approaching normality again. After the huge sacrifices of the last 12 months, and we are sure that everyone will breathe a huge sigh of relief that light is beginning to appear at the end of a very dark tunnel. However, the threat from Coronavirus remains very real and we still have many weeks of restrictions ahead of us, so everyone should continue to stay home, protect the NHS and save lives. Given the need for continued restrictions it is vital that the Government come forward with a further package of financial support including further help for businesses that will be forced to remain closed for some months, additional support for workers who need to self isolate, and a scheme to help the 3 million self employed who have been excluded from any form of help at all for the past year."

Also, responding to the Prime Minister’s announcement of a roadmap out of the national lockdown, Cllr Ian Hudspeth, Chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, said:- "Councils will do all they can to turn this roadmap into a reality by building on successful work with the NHS on the vaccination roll out. Widespread community testing in Schools, businesses, Care Homes and other places; coordinated by Councils; will also be absolutely fundamental in bringing down infection rates and releasing restrictions on our lives and economy. Councils want all children to return to School to continue with their education and will be working closely with the Government, education leaders and Schools to make sure the return, on 8 March 2021, is a success. Further clarity is needed on how all children, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, can recover the education that they have missed out on, as well as on funding and resources for any educational 'catch up' programme. We all need to continue to play our part to ensure our lives can return back to normal by following social distancing rules, wearing a face covering and washing our hands regularly. It is also vital that we all do the right thing and self isolate when required. To help, the Government needs to ensure its £500 self isolation payment support scheme continues and is available to all those in need of financial support as a result of the requirement to self isolate."

The Night Time Economy sector, who are 1 of the hardest hit during the pandemic have also responded the the announcement have also responded Michael Kill, CEO NTIA, commented:- “We are pleased to hear within the Prime Minister’s statement the inclusion of a timeline for night time economy businesses, in particular some of the hardest hit businesses, many of which have been closed since March 2020, like nightclubs, bars and casinos... Despite this, our evidence suggests that 85% of those who work in the night time economy are considering leaving the sector. The sector urgently needs additional clarity on reopening and critical financial support from the Chancellor if we are to avoid economic and social damage that will last a generation.”

The Country Land and Business Association (CLA) President Mark Bridgeman, has given a cautious welcome to the Prime Minister’s statement on the reopening of the economy. He said:- "The Prime Minister's statement gives cause for cautious optimism. Many tourism businesses are teetering on the edge, but the news that they could reopen in April will come as a huge relief. We are all desperate to see family and friends and we are fortunate in this country to have lots of beautiful rural hideaways. Of course there is a place for holidays abroad, but with international restrictions likely to be in place perhaps we should see this summer as an opportunity to reinvent the great British summer holiday, and remind ourselves that you don’t have to travel far for a great holiday in a beautiful location. But Government must now be brave and unashamedly back British tourism. The temporary VAT cut for tourism and hospitality businesses helped for a time last year, but the truth is many tourism businesses will continue to be in difficulty for some considerable time. Making the VAT cut from 20% to 5% permanent for small tourism business would not only rescue the industry in the short term, but allow businesses to grow significantly, creating jobs and adding up to £4.5billion to the economy."

And it is not just business who are worried by what was lacking in the information being given out. Ian Noon, Head of Policy at the National Deaf Children's Society, also added his concerns:- "With England’s 35,000 deaf pupils close to a return to education, the goalposts on face masks have moved yet again. Public health must take priority, but bringing face masks into classrooms will have a devastating effect on deaf children’s studies, mental health and ability to take part in lessons. The Government cannot make an announcement and expect this to be enough. It must move quickly to show exactly how it will guarantee deaf children can still access their lessons. We cannot have a situation where thousands of deaf children and young people are unable to understand their teacher, leaving many with little point in even attending class. The future of their education is at stake and the clock has already started."

Boris Johnson is correct to be cautious, but to keep the public on his side, he must address the elephants in the room and get the financial support in place for all the businesses affected, not just selected high profile ones. This is a subject, throughout the crisis has escaped from the Government narrative for nearly 12 months. So what are your thoughts about the announcement?  Please email so email them to us at:- News24@SouthportReporter.Com.


Could we have a road from Northern Ireland to Liverpool City Region before HS2

IF things could not get any stranger, now we have learned that Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, is reportedly pushing for a series of tunnels to be constructed along with an “underground roundabout” beneath the Isle of Man's capital. Yes, this latest idea that has already been given the nicknamed:- "The Douglas Junction Project" due to the proposed roundabout being deep underneath the Isle of Man, is being "suggested" as part of the UK's national transport review. The idea would see road tunnels being constructed from Liverpool, Heysham and Stranraer, to joining up to a road heading in and out of Larne, in Northern Ireland. The tunnel is 1 of several options being discussed as part of an effort to relieve the pressures placed on the Irish border, in the wake of Brexit. A report on the feasibility of the plan is due to be published in the next few weeks, but the financial cost alone will probably spell doom to this idea. That is way before the geological and engineering obstacles have been considered. Then you have the small matter that the tunnel could potentially hit another mayor stumbling block, the 1.6 million tonnes of 2nd World War ammunition, that was dumped in Beaufort's Dykev.

 


Surge testing in Southport now complete

THE surge testing operation to understand the spread of a South African variant of Covid19 in Southport has now been completed. Door to door testing in Dukes and Cambridge wards was paused over the weekend, and also on Monday, 22, February 2021, Sefton Council have received confirmation that no further testing will be carried out at the mobile testing unit at the Southport Theatre and Convention Centre after it closes tonight, at 6.30pm. The number of tests from the mobile unit and the home testing combined mean that sufficient testing has taken place in this area. Initial numbers from the operation, which is aimed at understanding any community spread of a variant of Covid19, known as SARS-CoV-2 (or VOC-202012/02) which originated in South Africa, show around 89% of the tests delivered have been completed and collected.

Sefton’s Executive Director, Andrea Watts, said:- "Our teams have visited over 17,000 addresses in the last three weeks delivering home testing kits; which has been no mean feat. The residents in the areas tested rightly deserve a huge thank you for being so willing to support us in this important task and help Government scientists learn more about this disease. Positive Covid19 tests from our targeted testing will be sent for genomic sequencing. This will help us to understand the spread of Covid19 variants locally. The community have been magnificent with people being so supportive on the doorstep and wanting to do whatever they can to help our efforts. Everyone in all of our communities should continue to follow the national lockdown restrictions in order to protect our most vulnerable.”

Although the targeted testing in Southport is complete, residents can still have a Covid19 test at Splashworld (if no symptoms) or can book a test, at Southport Town Hall, if they do have symptoms. Alternatively, they can call:- 119 and request for a home testing kit to be delivered.

 


Police figures reveal fall in Lancs bicycle thefts

LANCASHIRE Police figures have reveal the the country has the 13th lowest crime rate out of more than 40 Police Force across England, and also the 13th largest decrease in reported crime rates. During the 1st lockdown in spring 2020, Lancashire's reported bicycle thefts decreased, with a fall from 107 in April 2019 to 74 a year later. Nationally, bicycle theft fell by nearly 10% across the country from 2019 to 2020.

The biggest drops were during the 1st lockdown, with April 2020 recording a 39.5% fall (down from 6690 to 4050 crimes reported) year on year, followed by March 2020 to down 30.5% (6340 to 4410).

The easing of lockdown restrictions led to a small resurgence in bicycle crime, with September recording a near 10% year on year rise in reported thefts, a likely combination of soaring bicycle sales and a greater number of opportunities for thieves.

There is good news long term with bicycle theft currently at low levels, the most recorded crimes were in August 2013 followed by July 2017 and July 2013; the only months when bicycle theft reports passed 10,000 since May 2013 when monthly figures first became available. The data compares reported bicycle thefts from more than 40 Police Forces in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Responding to the latest figures, Greg Wilson founder of bicycle insurance pioneers Quotezone.co.uk says:- "With the nation in lockdown you would expect bicycle crime to be non-existent, not just down by 10%, but the surge in cycling over the last 12 months has been quite unprecedented, with a 78% rise in cycling reported during the course of the 1st lockdown. As the country cautiously prepares to emerge from lockdown, there's a possibility the number of bicycle thefts might rise sharply, given the increase in bikes available to opportunistic thieves. So bike safety and comprehensive insurance will be important , especially since a large percentage are new owners and perhaps unaware of what's available to protect themselves and their bicycle. From professional cyclists to enthusiasts and from commuters to families just wanting socially distanced leisure time, the range of individual insurance needs is extensive. Quotezone.Co.UK launched the UK's 1st bicycle insurance comparison website with bespoke bicycle and cyclist insurance providers so customers can see a range of products and compare which type of policy is needed."

Recommended by 97% of reviewers, Quotezone.co.uk helps around 3 million users every year, with over 400 insurance brands across 60 different products including niche items such as electric bicycle, mountain bike and road bike.

 


Total UK cases Covid19 cases in and around Liverpool City Region

THE total number of UK Coronavirus (Covid19) infections that have been laboratory confirmed, within the UK, has risen by:- 10,641 cases and the total number now stand at:- 4,126,150 that includes tests carried out by commercial partners which are not included in the 4 National totals.

The total number of Covid19 associated UK fatalities added to the total, was sadly reported to be:-178 within 28 days of positive test, according to the Department of Health. The total number of deaths of people who have had a positive test result confirmed by a Public Health or NHS laboratory is:- 120,757, within 28 days of positive test. Deaths with Covid19 on the death certificate:- 129,498.

The number of Covid19 patients currently in UK Hospitals:- 18,462. The current number of Covid19 patients currently in mechanical ventilation beds in UK Hospitals:- 2,469 Daily number of Covid19 patients admitted to UK Hospitals:- 1,304.

In England, there are a total of:- 3,614,793 confirmed cases. North West - total of:- 568,578 confirmed cases.

The number of laboratory confirmed cases within the Liverpool City Region are as follows:-

 

Area and number of confirmed cases:- Risen by:-



Liverpool City Region
 
Nation Lockdown

National UK Restrictions

Liverpool, 46,824 confirmed cases.

132

Halton, 11,462 confirmed cases.

23

Knowsley, 16,833 confirmed cases. 57
Sefton, 22,927 confirmed cases.

47

St. Helens, 16,197 confirmed cases.

80

Wirral, 23,465 confirmed cases.

43

 
Colour Key:- 0  1 to 10 11 to 20 21 to 30  31 to 40 41 to 50 51 to 100 100 to 199 200 & over  



The number of laboratory confirmed cases within Local Authorities around the Liverpool City Region, since start of the Pandemic, are as follows:-

 

 Blackburn with Darwen, 16,943 confirmed cases.

 Blackpool, 8,772 confirmed cases.

 Bolton, 23,867 confirmed cases.

 Bury, 16,091 confirmed cases.

 Cheshire East, 19,462 confirmed cases.

 Cheshire West and Chester, 20,354 confirmed cases.

 Lancashire, 91,596 confirmed cases.

 Manchester, 49,289 confirmed cases.

 Oldham, 21,352 confirmed cases.

 Preston, 12,682 confirmed cases.

 Rochdale, 19,529 confirmed cases.

 Salford, 21,478 confirmed cases.

 Stockport, 19,217 confirmed cases.

 Tameside, 16,688 confirmed cases.

 Trafford, 15,469 confirmed cases.

 Warrington, 16,821 confirmed cases.

 Wigan, 26,910 confirmed cases.

 Salford, 21,391 confirmed cases.

 Stockport,
19,103 confirmed cases.

 Tameside,
16,598 confirmed cases.

 Trafford,
15,389 confirmed cases.

 Warrington,
16,767 confirmed cases.

 Wigan,
26,805 confirmed cases.
 

Total UK people who have received vaccination

1st Dose 2nd Dose
17,723,840 624,325
Jab Stats correct as of 19 February 2021
The vaccination programme began on 8 December 2020 with people receiving the vaccine developed by Pfizer / BioNTech, and people began receiving the Oxford University / AstraZeneca vaccine from 4 January 2021. Both vaccines are given as 2 doses, at least 21 days apart, for a full vaccination course.
 

Daily reported Covid19 deaths are now measured across the UK as deaths that occurred within 28 days of the 1st laboratory confirmed positive Covid19 test.   Daily and cumulative numbers of Covid19 patients admitted to Hospital. Data are not updated every day by all 4 nations and the figures are not comparable as Wales include suspected Covid19 patients while the other nations include only confirmed cases.

 

The latest R number is estimated at:- 0.6 to 0.9 with a daily infection growth rate range of:- -6% to -3%, as of 19 February 2021.
 


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