Relaxed Christmas rules unlikely to be changed

Relaxed Christmas rules unlikely to be changed

 · 2 min read

Despite rising infection rates, the relaxation in Covid-19 rules between 23rd and 27th December, is unlikely to be changed, although people are being urged to exercise caution over the Christmas period. 

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Despite rising infection rates, the relaxation in Covid-19 rules between 23rd and 27th December, is unlikely to be changed, although people are being urged to exercise caution over the Christmas period

The public have been advised to carefully consider who they form bubbles with and who they choose to see over Christmas. Elderly family members, for example, should be kept safe and limited contact has been advised. 

Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick said people should "weigh up the risks to their own loved ones" and "exercise their own good judgement" around their Christmas plans. 

"You can come together as three families and bubble for up to five days - but I suspect many, many people across the country will choose to do less than that, to protect themselves, their loved ones, and broader society." 

He also pointed out that there was a significant rise in cases in the United States after Thanksgiving. 

There have been concerns raised about the proposed relaxation of the rules over the festive season. Steve Reed, the Shadow Housing Secretary, said there should be a review of the proposal "given what we now know about the failure of [England's] tiered system to control the rate of infection".

Concerns have spiked as a new strain of Covid-19 has been linked to the recent increase in cases. London, most parts of Essex and some parts of Hertfordshire have been placed into tier 3 restrictions today. 

Graham Medley, a member of SAGE, told the BBC, "When the rules were made about Christmas, we didn't know what that prevalence was going to be." 

He has also expressed concerns that the NHS would be significantly overwhelmed as a result of the five-day relaxation in the rules. 

Leaders across all UK nations have agreed to “maintain a UK-wide approach". Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said that was a proposal in place to reduce the risk of increased cases. 

There are continued efforts and talks to assess how people could be able to see their loved ones, while at the same time, not letting the virus get out of control. In the current situation, many envisage a difficult start to 2021 and potential third national lockdown as cases increase because of families mixing.

Zara Tunnicliffe
Zara Tunnicliffe
Zara joined Age Group in 2020 and is an expert in all things food and drink, travel and lifestyle.
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