Prime Minister Boris Johnson has this evening confirmed that the highest tier of Covid restrictions will be imposed on Greater Manchester.
During a 5pm press conference, Johnson said that Tier 3 restrictions will take effect in the region from midnight on Thursday, or 0.01am on Friday.
“That means that pubs and bars must close unless they’re serving substantial meals, households can’t mix indoors or in most outdoor settings; in some public outdoor spaces must be limited to the rule of six.
“And we strongly advise against travel into and out of the area.
“In line with the additional measures taken in Lancashire, casinos, bingo halls, betting shops, adult gaming centres and soft play areas must also close.
“Regulations will be laid in front of Parliament on Thursday and come into force just after midnight.”
He added: “Not to act would put Manchester’s NHS and the lives of many of Manchester’s residents at risk,” he said.
Johnson said that Manchester would receive £22m in funding, well below the sums that Greater Manchester’s local leaders were wanting.
This evening’s news follows a day of high drama, during which talks between Greater Manchester leaders and the government over a support package broke down.
Andy Burnham, Greater Manchester Mayor, held his own press conference in Manchester city centre at 4pm during which he claimed the government had “walked away” from a deal after days of negotiations.
Government minister Robert Jenrick had given Greater Manchester a deadline of noon today to agree a deal.
Burnham said local leaders had asked for £15million a month to provide support for people until the end of March, a total of £90m.
That figure had been reduced to £75m and £65m, but Burnham refused to go lower and accept the government’s offer of £60m.