England returns to partial lockdown for four weeks
A partial lockdown with far-reaching restrictions on public life came into force in England on Thursday morning, as an attempt to combat the spread of the coronavirus.
The measures, which are similar but not as comprehensive as those in place in the first lockdown earlier in the year, are to last until December 2, 2020.
Restaurants, cultural facilities, sports centres and leisure facilities have to close, but schools and universities remain open.
Retailers will also stay closed for a month – apart from supermarkets and other stores considered necessary.
People may only leave their homes for good reason – for work, sports, recreation or to care for relatives.
Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are making their own rules to combat the virus.
England’s National Health Service was placed on its highest alert level Wednesday as bosses said they were seriously concerned about the added pressure on health systems in particular overcrowded hospitals.
The number of daily deaths in connection with the virus rose to 492 on Wednesday, the highest toll since the start of the pandemic.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson had introduced a three-tier system of restrictions for England in mid-October, but the move was criticized as insufficient.
Parliament had approved the current lockdown on Wednesday.