Brutal fresh restrictions are expected to come into force next week – and millions in northern England are bracing themselves for the strict new lockdown measures.
England will reportedly be divided into three different tiers from Monday as the Government desperately tries to keep control of the expected second wave of Covid-19 .
A new 'traffic light' system is soon to be announced, which will see all areas of England classified as highest, medium or lowest risk.
It is reported that the strictest tier (tier three) will see parts of the north return to its early-summer state.
Pubs, restaurants and leisure facilities are to be closed once again, it is claimed.
Tier three also means all household mixing will not be allowed.
Tier three areas are expected to include Manchester, Liverpool, Nottingham, Newcastle and Leeds – where the number of people testing positive have soared in the past two weeks.
Tier two restrictions are already in place in many areas.
They include no household mixing in homes – and no household mixing in hospitality settings.
Although pubs and restaurants would be allowed to stay open, it is said.
Tier one is the least strict in areas touched the least by Covid-19.
People have to follow the rule of six and maintain social distancing with masks needed in shops and on public transport.
Controversial 10pm curfews currently in place across England will remain.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock told MPs earlier this week: "I'll update the House in due course on what action the Government is taking so we can have more consistent approaches to levels of local action, working with our colleagues in local government.
"For now, it's essential that people follow the guidance in their local area.
"The proposals that we are working through and that I will bring to this House are to have a more simplified approach to the local action that we took."
Last week the government's SAGE committee estimated that the R rate – which measures whether the virus is spreading – is between 1.2 and 1.6 in England, with the North East and London having the highest rates.
This means the number of cases will double every seven to eight days.
Dr Adam Kucharski, who sits on the Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Modelling, previously warned that the daily death toll could be above 100 within a fortnight if changes are not made.
He told the BBC: "Deaths are now averaging over 50 a day; I think within the next couple of weeks we could quite well be seeing over a hundred a day.
"We are in a situation where cases are rising and they are going to continue to rise unless something changes.”
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