LONDONERS who fled the capital earlier than lockdown final evening have been at this time slammed as “completely irresponsible” by a fuming Matt Hancock.
The city’s stations were described as “war zones” as locals skipped city earlier than the robust new Tier 4 lockdown got here into impact at midnight.
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St Pancras Station was packed final eveningCredit score: ITV
Matt Hancock at this time blasted the crowds that fled London earlier than lockdown final eveningCredit score: Sky Information
Visitors is seen on London’s A40 final evening as new coronavirus restrictions got here into pressure at midnightCredit score: London Information Footage
Individuals anticipate trains at a packed Paddington stationCredit score: PA:Press Affiliation
Boris Johnson begged Brits to “keep native” this Christmas in a bid to cease the unfold of coronavirus as a brand new, extra infectious pressure of the lethal bug emerged.
Cancelling the festive season for tens of millions, the PM warned the robust restrictions in London and the South East have been wanted to cease the brand new variant – which is believed to be about 70% more infectious than the preliminary pressure.
Professor Chris Whitty final evening begged individuals to remain at residence yesterday night as the principles have been unveiled, warning: “If in case you have packed a bag, unpack it.”
But inside hours there have been lengthy queues of visitors on roads out of London and chaotic crushes at railway terminals as individuals fled to keep away from the brutal new restrictions.
And Well being Secretary Matt Hancock at this time slammed the scenes – sighing as he was proven footage of the busy journey terminals.
He informed Sophy Ridge on Sunday: “This was clearly completely irresponsible behaviour.”
EXTRA COPS CALLED IN
After which showing on the The Andrew Marr Present on Sunday, he added: “We have now all received a duty.
“We in Authorities after all have a duty, however so does each single individual.
“The plea that I’ve is that folks will play their half, as a result of it’s only by appearing, all of us, that we are able to get this beneath management.”
British Transport Police are actually anticipated to deploy further officers to make sure solely important journeys are happening.
Final evening in St Pancras station, lots of of individuals have been filmed speeding in the direction of boundaries to board the trains leaving the capital.
Related frantic scenes have been pictured at Paddington station and King’s Cross.
Visitors on the A40 leaving London was jammed within the hours after Mr Johnson’s bombshell announcement.
Commmuter Harriet Clugston, who filmed the scenes at St Pancras, in contrast it to Saigon on the finish of the Vietnam Battle when individuals have been determined to flee earlier than the Viet Cong invaded.
She tweeted: “Final prepare out of Saigon. Queue at St Pancras as we wait to board the Leeds-bound prepare.”
“As anticipated, prepare is crammed,” she later wrote.
Lengthy queues of visitors on the A40 in London after Boris Johnson’s Tier 4 announcementCredit score: Chris Eades
Chris Whitty informed Londoners to not flee the capitalCredit score: PA:Press Affiliation
Tier 4 restrictions come into pressure at midnightCredit score: Chris Eades
St Pancras Station was packed final eveningCredit score: ITV
Information from the ONS exhibits that Covid instances are rising throughout England however in areas plunged into Tier 4 at this time, infections have soared throughout DecemberCredit score: www.gov.uk
The brand new stain is spreading quickly accounting for 28% of instances in November. However by December 9, round 60% of instances have been right down to the brand new pressureCredit score: www.gov.uk
Harriet mentioned that officers introduced that “social distancing won’t be doable” within the packed prepare.
One other Twitter person posted: “Mate St Pancras regarded like a struggle zone tonight. Euston very tame as compared.”
Community Rail chairman Sir Peter Hendy added: “The message is evident – to fight this virus, you should observe the steerage and keep at residence.
“At stations we can be deploying additional workers, bulletins will make the legislation clear and extra BTP officers are in place to make sure that solely important journeys happen.”
A British Transport Police spokesperson mentioned: “As has been the case all through the pandemic our officers will proceed to be highly-visible, patrolling providers and stations on the rail community in tier 4 areas and nationwide all through the Christmas interval.
“Officers will proceed supporting rail workers in partaking with passengers and reminding those that do have to journey to put on face coverings.
“We hope that the general public will proceed to behave responsibly and play their half in serving to to guard themselves, and one another, by following the steerage and restrictions set out by the Authorities, in addition to complying with the requirement to put on face coverings.”
What are the brand new Tier 4 guidelines?
Tier 4 will embody:
- The Tier 4 can be similar to the November lockdown – with all however important retailers closed
- The “keep at residence” message is predicted to be legislation
- The plan to permit Brits to kind social bubbles over five days will be ditched, with solely these in Tiers 1 to three allowed to kind a bubble on Christmas Day itself
- Worldwide journey overseas will not be suggested – however will not be banned
- Individuals shouldn’t enter or depart Tier 4
- Individuals can solely meet one individual from one other family in an out of doors house
- They will not be reviewed till 30 December – after Christmas
- Assist bubbles can be nonetheless allowed
- Weddings can be banned aside from excessive instances – like those that are terminally unwell
Journey and mixing households are banned beneath the new highest level tier – with households elsewhere solely allowed to kind ‘Christmas bubbles’ on December 25 itself, the PM informed the nation.
Mr Johnson informed round 18 million Brits in Tier 4 the robust crackdown will assist save lives with a brand new mutant pressure of the virus sweeping by means of the south of England.
He mentioned: “Sure, Christmas this yr can be very completely different, however we should be life like.
“We’re sacrificing our likelihood to see family members this Christmas, so we now have a greater likelihood of defending their lives so we are able to see them at future Christmases. “
The PM warned the nation he couldn’t ignore the terrifying new pressure and vowed: “We have now to behave to guard the general public.”
Mr Johnson mentioned: “As Prime Minister, it’s my obligation to take the troublesome selections, to do what is true to guard the individuals of this nation.
“Given the early proof we now have on this new variant of the virus, and the potential threat it poses, it’s with a heavy coronary heart that I need to inform you we can’t proceed with Christmas as deliberate.
“I sincerely consider there isn’t a different open to me.”
He mentioned individuals could be “upset” however vowed he was following the science as a result of the new rapidly-spreading strain.
The PM mentioned he “bitterly regretted” cancelling holidays for tens of millions of individuals. The brand new restrictions could be reviewed once more on December 30.
Individuals all through England are suggested to “keep native” and keep away from abroad journey, whereas these in Tier 4 will solely have the ability to go overseas for important enterprise.
There have been 27,000 constructive Covid-19 instances recorded at this time, the most recent stats confirmed.
Boris Johnson has cancelled Christmas for tens of millions of BritsCredit score: Getty – Pool
Professor Whitty urged individuals to not pack their luggage and flee the capitalCredit score: Sky Information