Statement from Council Leader Cllr Richard Wright

Date Published: 17 December 2020

“With transmission of the virus sadly not abating and incidence of Covid not showing any marked decline, I hope that people will understand the need for North Kesteven and the whole of Lincolnshire to remain in Tier 3 ‘Very High Alert’ going forward into the New Year.

“The Government is under significant pressure in trying to balance the effective control of the virus with the ability for the economy and functions of life to continue as effectively and safely as possible. It is for this reason that we have the tiering system in place, and in recognition of the ongoing reality within Lincolnshire, I encourage everyone to comply fully with the current restrictions and to exercise care and caution to keep themselves and others around them protected.

“Of course I understand the desire of residents and business owners to have moved to the slightly more relaxed Tier 2, but the statistics speak for themselves. Latest figures show that across Lincolnshire case numbers are still significantly higher than the national average – 260 per 100,000 population here compared to 194 for England overall.

“Whilst conscious of the need to support businesses, which the Council commits significant energies and resources in to, I am minded too that premature opening of hospitality before the virus is more under control isn’t necessarily the best way to effect that. It could just lead to even more damaging returns to full lockdowns.

“We need a clear path to recovery; not stop, starting every few weeks. Grants are available for affected businesses and we encourage application.

“I also echo the caution expressed by the Prime Minister and the scientists this week in respect to Christmas. While it is important that we are able to step back and enjoy a break, it is equally important that we remain careful and cautious and to remember that just because we can meet up with up to three households, it doesn’t mean that we should.

“The three households are a maximum, not a target, and a smaller, shortest Christmas will undoubtedly be a safer Christmas for everyone. With that thought, I wish you a safe, healthy and peaceful Christmas and urge your ongoing care and caution into the New Year."

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