Harrogate MP: Time is right to end lockdown on July 19

Harrogate's MP says the time is right to end 16 months of "grinding" Covid restrictions - even if he can understand some nervous about the end of lockdown on July 19.

Thursday, 8th July 2021, 3:01 pm
Updated Thursday, 8th July 2021, 3:08 pm
Andrew Jones, MP for Harrogate & Knaresborough, said: “Most of the country will be relieved that a grinding 16 months of restrictions looks set to come to an end."

Andrew Jones MP for Harrogate and Knaresborough, said: “Most of the country will be relieved that a grinding 16 months of restrictions looks set to come to an end in less than a fortnight.

"What was done was necessary to protect the elderly and the vulnerable.

It also saved our NHS for collapse under an even greater torrent of admissions than our hospitals experienced."

Monday’s initial statement by the prime minister Boris Johnson that the government intended to stick to ending lockdown on July 19 was followed by a flurry of further announcements.

Among the Covid-related restrictions which will end on that date are:

Social distancing

The rule of six

Indoor capacity limits

The requirement to work from home

Bubbles

Face masks

Table service

Schoolchildren will no longer have to isolate if a member of their class or year bubble tests positive for coronavirus after July 19. Bubbles and contact tracing in nurseries, schools and colleges will also end

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Talking about people's nervous about the lifting of all legal restrictions in less than two weeks' time, Harrogate's MP said it was the success of the vaccination programme which had made the crucial difference.

Mr Jones said: “Eighty-five per cent of adults have received a first vaccination and approaching two-thirds a second.

"This has switched the focus decisively from infection rates to hospital admission rates, levels of serious illness and fatalities and these thankfully remain low compared with other waves in this pandemic.

“I understand that there is nervousness around such a big change.

"But the time is right to make that change and return our lives to a greater degree of normality.”