Bristol City Council confirms decision on winter 'local lockdown' would be taken by government
Council chiefs have responded to claims that local Covid measures should be implemented during the winter if Bristol or any other part of England faces a spike in cases.
According to Government minister Therese Coffey, local lockdowns could return this winter to help relieve some of the strain on the NHS.
A Bristol City Council spokesperson was approached following the comments but said any lockdown rules, local or national, would be at the direction of central government.
Whilst national lockdowns were ruled out by the Work and Pensions Secretary Ms Coffey, she told Good Morning Britain local lockdowns ‘could still be an option’.
Ms Coffey said although local lockdowns could still require national Government approval, local public health directors could still bring in local rules such as masks on public transport.
Last winter, Bristol was put into Tier 3 of lockdown measures before being downgraded to Tier 2 only to be moved back into Tier 3 from Boxing Day.
With Covid-19 rises expected to rise over the coming months, Primer Minister Boris Johnson will tomorrow set out plans for dealing with Covid in the UK this winter at a major briefing.
However, national lockdowns are not expected to play a part in dealing with Covid-19 this winter as the Work and Pensions Secretary told Good Morning Britain national lockdowns 'wouldn't be needed'.
But she added: "What was important as we came out of step four we also said that we wanted to make sure that local public health directors were able to apply regulations as they saw appropriate.
“Rather than the national approach that we had adopted, recognising that had been a really good way to try and tackle the reduction in transmission and the admissions to hospital."
Additionally, Therese Coffey said local rules, instead of national rules, could be part of the plan this winter.
She said: "There may be some local elements which are needed in that particular area but those decisions will be taken carefully."
Presenter Susanna Reid pointed out that while the minister was ruling out national lockdowns, local lockdowns 'could still be an option'.
A spokesperson for the Department of Health and Social Care has also been approached for comment.