Lockdown WILL begin tomorrow as MPs approve plans for new month-long shutdown in England


Ps have backed a new four-week coronavirus lockdown for England meaning the national restrictions will come into force later.

The shutdown will run from Thursday until December 2 after MPs approved the regulations for a second lockdown by  516 votes to 38.

From Thursday, pubs, restaurants and non-essential shops will again be forced to close their doors.

The move came as the NHS in England was set to move into its highest alert level – level 4 – from midnight amid a continuing rise in coronavirus patients needing hospital care.

NHS England chief executive Sir Simon Stevens said the service already had “22 hospitals’ worth” of Covid-19 patients and now faced a “serious situation ahead”.

With Labour supporting the new lockdown restrictions – which were also expected to be approved by the House of Lords later on Wednesday – the Government’s majority was never in doubt.

However Mr Johnson faced an angry backlash from some Tory MPs – led by former prime minister Theresa May – alarmed at the economic impact of the controls as well as the curtailment of civil liberties.

In the Commons, the Prime Minister sought to reassure MPs that the measures – which are due to expire on December 2 – should enable shops and businesses to reopen in time for the run-up to Christmas.

He acknowledged however that it would depend on getting the R number – the reproduction rate of the virus – back down below 1.


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