The city has been placed in the High alert category (tier 2) meaning that, from tomorrow (Wednesday 14 October):
- you must not socialise with anybody outside your household or your care or support bubble in any indoor setting, whether at home or in public
- you must not socialise in a group of more than 6 outside, including in a garden or park (other than where specific exemptions apply in law)
Businesses and venues can continue to operate in a Covid-secure manner, other than those that are already closed in law, and schools, universities and places of worship will remain open.
Pubs, restaurants and bars must continue to close at 10pm. Takeaways can operate after 10pm but only via delivery service, collection or drive through.
Weddings and funerals can go ahead with restrictions on the number of attendees, while exercise classes and organised sport can continue to take place outdoors, and indoors as long as people are able to avoid mixing with other households and for youth or disability sport.
At all times, people must follow social distancing rules, wear a face covering where required (unless they’re exempt), work from home if possible and travel only where necessary. For full details, please visit GOV.UK.
Wolverhampton, along with other areas in the region already subject to local restrictions, has automatically moved into the High alert category. The new measures, which MPs are due to vote on later today, are broadly similar to those which were already in place in the city except that households cannot now mix indoors in public settings such as pubs and restaurants, as well as in private homes. People can mix in private gardens and other outdoor settings so long as they follow the ‘rule of 6’.
Councillor Ian Brookfield, Leader of the City of Wolverhampton Council, said: "As a city, we have worked hard and proactively to halt the spread of Covid-19.
"Last month we voluntarily asked the Government to include Wolverhampton in the restrictions already implemented in nearby Birmingham and Sandwell so we could cut household to household transmission.
"This was based on sound local data and epidemiology highlighting that the vast majority of transmissions in Wolverhampton were occurring within and between households.
"This approach carefully balanced the need to keep people safe with protecting the economic health and wellbeing of the city and was evidence based, sensible and proportionate.
"In Wolverhampton, we are not seeing evidence locally of a particular impact on infection rates from hospitality or retail which is why I lobbied against the specific new measure on households mixing in hospitality settings.
"Nevertheless, the decision has been made and it is now our duty to ensure we all follow the rules and continue to do everything we can to stop the spread of coronavirus so that we can protect our friends and family and get back some semblance of normality sooner rather than later.
“It will also help avoid Wolverhampton being placed in the Very High alert level where the measures are even tougher, with pubs and other businesses closed and further restrictions on households mixing outdoors. We really don’t want to go there if we can help it, so please continue to play your part.”
Symptoms of Covid-19 include a fever, a new, continuous cough and loss or change to a person’s sense of taste and smell. People with symptoms, no matter how mild, should immediately self-isolate and book a test by visiting NHS or calling 119. People can now get tests up to 8 days after first developing symptoms.
Anyone who tests positive for Covid-19 will be contacted by NHS Test and Trace and will be asked to share information about people that have been close contacts recently.