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Exposure of Gladys Berejiklian’s love affair at ICAC inquiry makes her human, says Jana Hocking

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exposure of gladys berejiklians love affair at icac inquiry makes her human says jana hocking
Triple M radio producer Jana Hocking

Triple M radio producer Jana Hocking

Triple M radio producer Jana Hocking

What you may have heard on Monday as the explosive details of NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian’s relationship with former Wagga Wagga MP Daryl Maguire were aired like dirty laundry at a corruption watchdog inquiry, was a collective sigh of relief.

That was the sound of every woman on planet earth letting out a knowing, sympathetic heave that could be loosely transcribed as: ‘Oh Gladys, we’ve all been there.’

Afterwards we gathered around the water cooler to discuss the details as if we had just watched the most scandalous episode of Married At First Sight.

Except this time the goss wasn’t about the former beauty pageant contestant who had just been screwed over by the plumber turned Instagram influencer. 

It was about our Glady B.

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Gladys Berejiklian with disgraced Wagga Wagga MP Daryl Maguire, who is under investigation by the Independent Commission Against Corruption. The exposure of their half-decade love affair has made the Premier more 'human' than ever, Ms Hocking argues

Gladys Berejiklian with disgraced Wagga Wagga MP Daryl Maguire, who is under investigation by the Independent Commission Against Corruption. The exposure of their half-decade love affair has made the Premier more 'human' than ever, Ms Hocking argues

Gladys Berejiklian with disgraced Wagga Wagga MP Daryl Maguire, who is under investigation by the Independent Commission Against Corruption. The exposure of their half-decade love affair has made the Premier more ‘human’ than ever, Ms Hocking argues

The woman who has guided us so calmly and carefully through a pandemic, with a steady hand and a stern voice when we needed it most.

A fierce leader so brazen in her approach to tackling a crisis that she managed to keep NSW’s COVID numbers low in a way that didn’t feel like a dictatorship (cough, cough, Dan Andrews).

More like ‘if you don’t wear a mask and stop putting your germs everywhere, I won’t be mad at you, just disappointed’ kinda way, which we all know is so much worse than a good telling off.

Many were shocked to hear she had forged a secret five-year relationship with a man who is currently under investigation by the Independent Commission Against Corruption. But not I.

Many wondered: ‘What makes a woman like Gladys Berejiklian, one of the most powerful leaders in Australia, fall for a dodgy guy? Even sticking by her man after she was forced to fire him?’

Well, you could ask the same of Hillary Clinton, who decided to stick by her philandering buffoon of a husband, or Sharon Osbourne who put up with years of antics from her rockstar trouble maker.

Or in fact, any woman with a pulse.

Yes, dear outraged viewers of this midday soap…. I mean, ICAC inquiry. It turns out our premier is indeed, human.

The Premier's secret romance has already inspired street art, like this discarded mattress that was spotted in Marrickville in Sydney's inner-west on Wednesday, October 14

The Premier's secret romance has already inspired street art, like this discarded mattress that was spotted in Marrickville in Sydney's inner-west on Wednesday, October 14

The Premier’s secret romance has already inspired street art, like this discarded mattress that was spotted in Marrickville in Sydney’s inner-west on Wednesday, October 14

Ms Berejiklian addresses the ICAC inquiry on Monday. Ms Hocking notes she is not the first powerful woman to stick by a man making dubious decisions

Ms Berejiklian addresses the ICAC inquiry on Monday. Ms Hocking notes she is not the first powerful woman to stick by a man making dubious decisions

Mr Maguire gives evidence on Wednesday, when he confirmed he had been in an 'on again, off again' relationship with the NSW Premier since 2015

Mr Maguire gives evidence on Wednesday, when he confirmed he had been in an 'on again, off again' relationship with the NSW Premier since 2015

Ms Berejiklian (left) and Mr Maguire (right) address the ICAC inquiry, which threatens to derail Gladys’ political career and force her resignation as New South Wales Premier

And like many of us, she’s fallen for the love bombing, lapped up the attention and handed her heart to a guy your friends so often tell you to stay clear of.

I too have been known to fall for a man who was a bit rough around the edges. A project. Someone I knew could be better under the right guidance and nagging. I’ve believed I can ‘fix them’ with the right amount of love and attention.

I still think back and shudder at the time I fell madly and stupidly in love with a guy who was no stranger to the criminal system.

I had made it into the university course of my dreams. I was so focused on studying and gaining internships that I had no time for a boyfriend, well apart from a cheeky fondle on the uni bar dance floor.

Then one night during term holidays, I went along to a friend’s gig and in he strutted.

Ms Berejiklian (far right) and Mr Maguire (far left) kept their love secret for five years, before their private correspondence was laid bare in the most public of fashions

Ms Berejiklian (far right) and Mr Maguire (far left) kept their love secret for five years, before their private correspondence was laid bare in the most public of fashions

Ms Berejiklian (far right) and Mr Maguire (far left) kept their love secret for five years, before their private correspondence was laid bare in the most public of fashions

Just like Ms Berejiklian (pictured outside the NSW State Parliament on October 13), Jana Hocking has also fallen for a man 'a bit rough around the edges'

Just like Ms Berejiklian (pictured outside the NSW State Parliament on October 13), Jana Hocking has also fallen for a man 'a bit rough around the edges'

Just like Ms Berejiklian (pictured outside the NSW State Parliament on October 13), Jana Hocking has also fallen for a man ‘a bit rough around the edges’

The strong, confident, slightly scary man of my hormonal dreams. He had just the right amount of cheeky banter to keep a girl interested. 

And those deep blue eyes. We all know the type.

I was instantly hooked and he knew it. Over the next four years, while I was gaining a degree and working my butt off to land exciting jobs, he was picking fights, making bad life choices, attending court cases and eventually landed himself in jail.

Sure, I was book smart, but good lord was I lagging behind when it came to matters of the heart. When he got into another fight at the pub, my brain, my family and friends would all say ‘LEAVE HIM’.

But my heart said ‘nooooo, you can fix him! No one understands him like I do!’. 

Ms Hocking (pictured in 2019) says Gladys' escapades have made her relatable to women all over the world because millions before her have fallen for the 'wrong' guy

Ms Hocking (pictured in 2019) says Gladys' escapades have made her relatable to women all over the world because millions before her have fallen for the 'wrong' guy

Ms Hocking (pictured in 2019) says Gladys’ escapades have made her relatable to women all over the world because millions before her have fallen for the ‘wrong’ guy

Yes, we’ve all heard it before.

So mortified was I to have a boyfriend who was in jail that for a year, while he was languishing in a prison cell, I was making up excuses about why he had missed yet another family birthday, christening or wedding.

So Gladys, I get it. You made a bad decision. As have many of us when it comes to that tiny beating thing in our chest.

So you didn’t want the world to know you were in a relationship. Fine.

We’ve all dated a bloke that friends have tut-tutted at, but let’s be honest. There’s something very alluring about a secret relationship, you saucy minx.

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34450950 8845449 image a 2 1602803277657

Ms Hocking empathises with the embattled Premier (pictured at a press conference on October 14), and says the scandal will one day fill the pages of Ms Berejiklian’s autobiography

I got a real kick out of sneaking out for visits. Plus, when all of this is over and everyone calms down, it will be a hell of a story to tell in your best-selling autobiography. I can see the book sales already.

You see, love can make us pick the strangest partners.

It’s human nature to want something we can’t have. That seems a bit naughty. More often then not, we want it more.

Thankfully, I discovered it was just a phase. And Gladys, I’m sure you will too.

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

Australia

Coronavirus Penrith Panthers fined $10K after fans breached COVID-19 restrictions during grand final

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coronavirus penrith panthers fined 10k after fans breached covid 19 restrictions during grand final

The Penrith Panthers have lost big two weekends in a row, with its leagues club copping a $10,000 fine after footage showed fans breaching COVID safety requirements during last weekend’s NRL grand final.

The footage showed excited patrons mingling, hugging and drinking while standing during the team’s 20-26 loss to the Melbourne Storm.

NSW Liquor and Gaming director of compliance Dimitri Argeres said fans should have known better.

 

Fans (pictured) were filmed breaching COVID-19 restrictions by mingling, hugging and drinking next to the bar at Penrith Panthers Leagues Club during the grand final

Fans (pictured) were filmed breaching COVID-19 restrictions by mingling, hugging and drinking next to the bar at Penrith Panthers Leagues Club during the grand final

Fans (pictured) were filmed breaching COVID-19 restrictions by mingling, hugging and drinking next to the bar at Penrith Panthers Leagues Club during the grand final

‘It’s not fair on the club, its staff or the community,’ he said.

‘At the same time, venues need to make sure they are adequately implementing their safety plans, particularly when higher patron numbers are expected due to special events.’

The leagues club was not the only venue caught out on grand final night, with ANZ Stadium fined $5000 for allowing patrons to congregate in bar areas to watch the match.

Two other venues at Sydney Olympic Park – The Brewery at the Novotel and the Locker Room – were also issued $5000 fines.

Mr Argeres said excitement was not an excuse.

‘Sporting events build up anticipation and create lots of excitement, we get that,’ he said.

‘But they also create exactly the types of situation we’re trying to avoid – crowds that mingle and turn into one big group of close contacts.

‘Don’t forget life isn’t quite back to normal yet and if we want to enjoy summer with our friends and families, we need to keep COVID transmission low.’

The Panthers Penrith Rugby Leagues Club (pictured) was fined $10,000 for not stopping fans from breaching COVID-19 restrictions

The Panthers Penrith Rugby Leagues Club (pictured) was fined $10,000 for not stopping fans from breaching COVID-19 restrictions

The Panthers Penrith Rugby Leagues Club (pictured) was fined $10,000 for not stopping fans from breaching COVID-19 restrictions 

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Man deported to New Zealand after punching his pregnant partner

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man deported to new zealand after punching his pregnant partner

A man who has lived in Australia since he was a baby is set to be deported to New Zealand after he punched his pregnant partner in the stomach.  

The 22-year-old, whose name has been withheld by a court, arrived in Australia in 1998 aged just five months and has an extensive criminal record of 40 separate offences in the last six years. 

Australian authorities earlier in October have already deported two planes packed with New Zealand criminals back across the Tasman. 

A criminal is marched onto a plane by an Australian Border Force official before being deported in September (file image)

A criminal is marched onto a plane by an Australian Border Force official before being deported in September (file image)

A criminal is marched onto a plane by an Australian Border Force official before being deported in September (file image)  

After the man’s visa was torn up in 2019, he appealled to the New South Wales Administrative Appeals Tribunal who this week upheld the visa cancellation. 

The tribunal heard how the man was placed into foster care at age seven and his criminal activities coincided with him developing drinking and drug problems as a teenager. 

The man has an extensive history of violence towards women, the tribunal was told, with one incident involving him as a teenager threatening a young girl with a knife, hitting her with his hand, cutting her leg with scissors and pulling her hair. 

The incident resulted in a sentence of two years probation and two control orders. 

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Covid-19 UK: Hull, Bath and Derby outbreaks growing quickest

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covid 19 uk hull bath and derby outbreaks growing quickest

Covid-19 outbreaks are growing fastest in Hull, Derby, and Bath, according to official data that MailOnline has converted into an interactive tool to show how quickly cases are rising in your town. 

Hull and Derby saw their coronavirus epidemics almost double in the seven-day spell ending October 25, with seven-day infection rates jumping to 279 and 329 cases per 100,000 people, respectively. 

Both cities, along with the rest of Staffordshire and Derbyshire, will be moved from Tier One into Tier Two from Saturday to try and stem the rise in infections, it was announced yesterday as England crept another step closer towards a full national lockdown.

But most of the authorities where epidemics have grown the most remain in Tier One, where only the rule of six and 10pm curfew apply. Scientists have argued these rules are not stringent enough to shrink the outbreak, with top Government advisers warning the current growth is ‘very bleak’.  

For example, North Somerset and Bath and North East Somerset, where cases jumped up 83 per cent and 70 per cent in one week, have yet to be hit by any tougher virus-controlling restrictions. It comes despite warnings that the coronavirus crisis is ‘speeding up’ in the south of the country. 

Public Health England’s weekly surveillance report revealed only 20 of all 150 authorities in England saw a drop in infections last week, including Nottingham where cases dropped by 30 per cent. Despite the city’s outbreak shrinking, it will be thrown under the toughest Tier Three restrictions from tomorrow, along with the rest of the county.

And the data offered more proof that the tightest lockdown measures do work, with Liverpool, Knowsley, Sefton and St Helens all seeing their weekly coronavirus infection rates drop. All of the Merseyside area has been under Tier Three lockdown since October 14. 

It suggests the brutal restrictions — which ban people from socialising with anyone outside their own household and mean many pubs, bars, and in some cases gyms, have to close — are beginning to work. However, scientists say the true effect of measure won’t be clear until a few weeks have passed. 

It comes as Boris Johnson is facing renewed pressure from his medical officers to impose a nation-wide shutdown before and after Christmas in a bid to allow families to gather over the holidays. Dominic Raab today hinted No10 could introduce a new Tier Four set of even stricter restrictions and refused to rule out a national lockdown. 

Percentage change in coronavirus cases across London in the week to October 25: The five local authorities where the infection rate grew the most are: Kingston upon Hull City, 92.81 per cent; Derby, 91.84 per cent; North Somerset, 82.99 per cent; Medway, 77.17 per cent; and Bath and North East Somerset 69.72 per cent

Percentage change in coronavirus cases across London in the week to October 25: The five local authorities where the infection rate grew the most are: Kingston upon Hull City, 92.81 per cent; Derby, 91.84 per cent; North Somerset, 82.99 per cent; Medway, 77.17 per cent; and Bath and North East Somerset 69.72 per cent

 Percentage change in coronavirus cases across London in the week to October 25: The five local authorities where the infection rate grew the most are: Kingston upon Hull City, 92.81 per cent; Derby, 91.84 per cent; North Somerset, 82.99 per cent; Medway, 77.17 per cent; and Bath and North East Somerset 69.72 per cent

Yesterday it was announced another 16 authorities would be dragged into Tier Two from Saturday. A number of them were among the 20 places where outbreaks have significantly worsened, according to Public Health England (PHE) data. 

PHE’s data is based on the number of positive swabs within the week October 19 to 25. The new infections can be divided by the population size for each given area to give a case rate per 100,000 people. This allows for figures between different areas to be compared accurately. 

For example in Kingston upon Hull, 279 new cases were diagnosed per 100,000 people in that seven-day period. The week prior, the figure was 145, showing an increase of 93 per cent.

Similarly Derby city’s infection rate rose by 92 per cent, from 171 to 328 cases per 100,000. It suggests that the outbreak is doubling every seven days in those locations. 

But both areas may have asked for more testing to help them contain the virus, meaning just looking at the growth may not paint the entire picture. Department of Health statistics that breakdown tests processed by local authority only go up until October 21, meaning it is not possible to tell exactly how much swabbing skewed the figures over that fortnight.

Earlier this week, Derby’s director of public health, Dr Robyn Dewis, called for all the city’s 259,000 residents to start adhering to Tier Two restrictions.

The advice came in anticipation of being moved into the higher level, which ministers confirmed last night would be happening. Amber Valley, Bolsover, Derbyshire Dales, Derby City, South Derbyshire, and the whole of High Peak will be moved into Tier Two as of Saturday. 

Dr Dewis told MailOnline: ‘I can never feel pleased to be asking our residents to make restrictions in their daily lives, however I do feel that it is urgent that we take action to reduce the spread of the virus. 

‘We have seen a rapid growth across the city with all wards affected. Importantly we are now seeing a significant increase in the over 60s who are infected.’

Meanwhile, North Somerset (83 per cent increase) and Bath and North East Somerset (70 per cent increase) also saw major growths in their outbreaks. 

But their infection rates of 130.2 and 191 are currently well below the average for the UK (230 per 100,000). This may explain why they remain in the ‘medium’ alert level, Tier One. 

Matt Lenny, director of public health at North Somerset Council said in a statement: ‘Analysis of the latest case data also shows that there’s no clear pattern of infection in local communities. 

‘The case data tells us that the virus is circulating generally in our community and we are no longer seeing greater rates of infection just in younger people.

‘I urge every resident in North Somerset to make the right choices when going about their daily lives.

‘We are at a critical point as cases rise and people mix and spend more time indoors. We should all be acting as if we already have the virus and modifying our behaviours to reduce the spread.’  

While places in Somerset are not considered Covid-19 hotspots in England, they may become so if measures are not adopted sooner, rather than later, to slow the spread of growth. 

WHERE DID THE INFECTION RATE GROW THE MOST? 

Kingston upon Hull, City of 92.81%

Derby 91.84%

North Somerset 82.99%

Medway 77.17%

Bath and North East Somerset 69.72%

South Gloucestershire 62.13%

Herefordshire, County of 58.10%

Derbyshire 57.98%

Stoke-on-Trent 56.79%

Lincolnshire 55.26%

Staffordshire 55.21%

Leicestershire 54.29%

Southampton 54.02%

Brighton and Hove 52.57%

Milton Keynes 50.88%

Swindon 49.99%

East Riding of Yorkshire 49.32%

Dudley 49.07%

West Sussex 46.89%

Leicester 46.57%

 

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WHERE DID THE INFECTION RATE GROW THE LEAST? 

Nottingham -30.00%

Liverpool -20.98%

York -20.25%

Windsor and Maidenhead -20.09%

Knowsley -18.18%

County Durham -15.51%

Sefton -12.54%

Rutland -11.63%

Devon -11.12%

Camden -10.03%

Halton -7.95%

South Tyneside -5.35%

Hackney and City of London -4.60%

Richmond upon Thames -3.96%

St. Helens -3.80%

Hartlepool -3.68%

Slough -3.02%

Sheffield -2.46%

Leeds -1.22%

Newcastle upon Tyne -0.42%

 

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Experts have previously said it’s the speed at which an outbreak is growing — and not its current size — that is the most important factor when considering the severity of the situation in any given area. 

Ministers are understood to analyse a ‘basket’ of indicators to make decisions on Covid-19 restrictions, including the infection rate, hospital admissions and speed of growth. 

Dominic Raab says Government is ‘ready’ for TIER FOUR COVID restrictions 

Dominic Raab today hinted the Government could introduce a new Tier Four set of even stricter coronavirus restrictions as he refused to rule out a national lockdown. 

The Government’s current local lockdown system is based on three tiers but there are fears that even the most draconian rules in Tier Three are not enough to stop the spread of the disease. 

A new Tier Four could see non-essential shops told to close and travel limited to getting to work and school. 

Mr Raab said the Government is ‘always ready for further measures’ as he insisted ministers intend to stick to their localised approach of cracking down on infections. 

But the Foreign Secretary admitted that both Germany and France had also used a strategy of local crackdowns before ultimately being forced into new nation shutdowns. 

He would only go so far as saying the Government is ‘striving to avoid’ following the UK’s European neighbours as he resisted imposing a ‘blanket approach or a blunt approach’. 

Mr Raab told the BBC’s Radio 4 Today programme: ‘We are always ready for further measures that we can take but I think the most important thing about further measures is we continue on the track that we are on of targeting the virus.

‘The difference between now and the first lockdown is we are in a much better place to really focus on where the virus is the greatest and I think that is right, not only in scientific and virus management terms, I think in terms of the way people feel about tackling the virus it is fair, it fits the natural justice that we are focusing on the areas where the uptick is the greatest and we are not taking a one-size-fits-all approach or a blanket approach or a blunt approach.’

Mr Raab said the Government wanted to avoid the ‘arbitrariness of a blanket approach’ as he claimed the public favour targeted restrictions. 

However, he did not rule out eventually having to impose a national lockdown after France and Germany made the move earlier this week. 

He said: ‘You mention France. France of course tried a localised approach and then fell back on the national approach.

‘What I think that shows you, Germany is the same, is how important it is that we all rally together at local level through to national level, communities, local leaders, national leaders, and really lean in to the localised focused approach.

‘That is the most effective way to tackle the virus and avoid the blanket approach which I don’t think would be in the best interests of this country and which we are striving to avoid.’

Mr Raab said it is ‘crucially important’ to ‘carry the public with us’ and that he believed the Government’s tiered approach is the best way to do that. 

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South Gloucestershire, in the south west, and Herefordshire in the West Midlands, also saw their outbreaks rapidly grow in the space of one week, by around 60 per cent. However, their infection rates are also lower than the national average and currently stand at 192 and 86, respectively.

The figures indicate the ‘second wave’ is now affecting all corners of England, and not just the north.   

Scientists warned this week infections are ‘speeding up’ in the south.

A worrying Government-funded study by Imperial College London found that the outbreak appears to be growing fastest in London and the South West, where rules are comparatively lax, and slowest in the northern regions with the toughest restrictions. 

They predicted the R rate — the average number of people each carrier infects — is also higher than two in the South East, East and South West, which have mostly escaped any tough local lockdowns.  

But the R rate in the capital is higher than anywhere else in England, at three. For comparison, the experts claimed the national R rate is around 1.6. Cases are doubling every three days compared to every nine days in the rest of England, the study claimed.  

The PHE data shows just 20 out of 149 councils recorded a fall in their Covid-19 infection rates in the week ending October 25. For comparison, 23 saw a dip the week before. 

A  number of large cities saw their infection rates drop in the week to October 25. This includes Nottingham (down 30 per cent), Liverpool (down 21 per cent), Sheffield (down 2.46 per cent) and Leeds (down 1.22 per cent).

But despite this, Nottingham and Leeds will be plunged into Tier Three restrictions this weekend. And there are no clear path for Liverpool and Sheffield to move out of their local ‘lockdowns’.

Liverpool, and the rest of Merseyside including Halton, Knowsley, Sefton, St Helens and Wirral, went straight into Tier Three when the tiered system came into force on October 14. All those places saw infection rates drop in the most recent week, other than Wirral, where cases only rose by 6 per cent. 

A number of places under Tier Two also saw drops in infection rates, including York (20 per cent), South Tyneside (5 per cent) and Newcastle upon Tyne (down a slight 0.42 per cent).

Parts of London — Camden (down 10 per cent), Hackney and City of London (down 4.60 per cent) and Richmond upon Thames (down 3.96 per cent) — also saw improvements in infection rates. These areas have some of the highest infection rates in London, suggesting that residents have acted to control the coronavirus.

But it’s understood London could be thrown into Tier Three lockdown within two weeks unless infection rates drop significantly across the whole capital. 

Londoners are currently banned from meeting indoors with anyone they don’t live with. 

However London Mayor Sadiq Khan is piling on pressure on No10 to drag the city into Tier Three, despite infection rates varying across the 32 different boroughs – from 223 positive tests per 100,000 people in Ealing over the most recent week, to 103 per 100,000 in Lewisham. 

It comes after the Government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) reportedly said this week all of England could be in Tier Three lockdown by mid-December if a national lockdown is not adopted before.

They said virus rates all over the country will soar past the levels seen in areas already put into the ‘very high’ category by the festive season, The Sun reported, with ‘a government source’ saying: ‘The latest Sage numbers are utterly bleak.’

SAGE has piled fresh pressure on Boris Johnson to impose tougher restrictions as it warned up to 85,000 people could die in a second wave. A ‘reasonable worst case scenario’ put forward by SAGE suggested daily deaths could remain above 500 for three months or more until March next year.

Almost 60 per cent of the population – around 32.6 million – will be under stricter rules by Monday

Almost 60 per cent of the population – around 32.6 million – will be under stricter rules by Monday

Almost 60 per cent of the population – around 32.6 million – will be under stricter rules by Monday

London ‘will go into Tier 3 lockdown in two weeks’ as Britain faces a super-spreader Christmas

London could be plunged into Tier 3 lockdown within two weeks as England creeped closer towards full national lockdown by the back door last night, with millions told they will face extra curbs.    

Boris Johnson is facing renewed pressure from his medical officers to impose a nation-wide shutdown before and after Christmas in a bid to allow families to gather over the holidays, and sources close so Sadiq Khan expect the capital to be locked down imminently.

Senior figures are warning that the UK’s three-tier system is not enough to ‘get on top of the numbers’, with deputy chief medical officer Jonathan Van-Tam reportedly beginning to change his mind over whether regional lockdowns will suppress the virus . He backed the move at a No 10 press conference last week

Presenting what one source called ‘very, very bleak’ data to a meeting of Covid-O, the the Cabinet subcommittee on coronavirus, he said that daily hospital admissions had reached the highest level since April at 1,404.  

There are fears that the whole country will be at Tier 3 by Christmas, and unable to meet extended family members unless the Government takes harsh, draconian action before the season.

Allowing people to visit family at Christmas will be a ‘spreader event’ that could cause a spike in infections many times worse than that caused by the return of university students, experts believe. 

But introducing national restrictions before and after Christmas, while lifting them for the big day could help minimise the impact. 

One senior health official told the Telegraph that anti-Covid measures were most likely to be successful if they were taken on a national basis rather than toughening up the rules for Tier 3. 

They added that a post-Christmas ‘circuit-breaker’ lockdown could also help reverse numbers and curb rising numbers of hospitalisations as fears spread that Britain’s ICUs could be overrun.

‘Releasing measures for two days is unlikely to cause a big upswing,’ a source said.’ But it won’t do nothing. Christmas brings people from all over the country to sit inside together, so its quite likely to be a spreading event.

‘But people want to see their loved ones and they want to make physical contact, and we have to recognise that.’ 

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Independent experts told MailOnline it’s likely most of the places in England that are in Tier One will move into Tier Two by Christmas because the Rule of Six and 10pm curfew are not enough to stamp out rising infections. 

Martin McKee, a professor of European public health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and member of Independent Sage, said: ‘We unfortunately have allowed the infection to get out of control and as a consequence we are going to need to turn this around, otherwise it will just keep going up, more will get seriously ill and more people will die.

‘The sooner we impose tighter restrictions, the better. I see MPs saying “the rates are low in my area so we shouldn’t do anything”. It’s not about if case are low, it’s about if they are increasing rapidly. 

‘We saw very clearly in March that it’s better sooner than later. So we really should be doing this now, we really have no time to lose.’

But Professor McKee stressed that with tighter restrictions, three essential things are needed — a clampdown on indoor social mixing where the virus can spread easily, mental health support, and a working test and trace system. Currently the UK’s NHS Test and Trace is not performing to the ‘world beating’ status that was promised.

Professor McKee added: ‘As long as infections are going up, we have a major problem. Simply because of the nature of exponential growth. It’s a simple nature of mathematics. Even if the infections are going up even slightly, the rate of growth will go upwards faster. 

‘On the other hand, if we can put in really stringent measure to stop people mixing with each other, you can get a large drop in quite a short period of time.

Professor Paul Hunter, an infectious disease expert at the University of East Anglia, said: ‘The Tier One restrictions are clearly not working in terms of suppressing the epidemic. I suspect the government would decide to increase, in most areas of the country, will at least move into Tier Two in the next month. And some of the current Tier Two will move into Tier Three. 

‘The interesting thing is it’s not going up quite as quickly in the northern cities as it was. And in some of those cities, such as Liverpool, it does seem to be declining a bit already.

‘I think it’s a little too early to say whether these Tier Two/Tier Three levels are not working. The bottom line is the higher restrictions may be working but it’s too early to be sure.

‘In the southern small town rural areas, that’s where a lot of the current increases are at the moment. It’s very obvious cases are increasing in the south now. Pretty much everywhere in between is on the up.

‘The issue is what time will they decide that is no longer acceptable or tolerable and then increase restrictions in those areas.’

Simon Clarke, an associate professor in cellular microbiology at University of Reading, said: ‘Are local restriction enough? They should be, but the problem is not so much going from Tier Two to Three, but going from One to Two. We know in certain parts of the country that is not happening quickly enough.

‘My gut feeling is we are heading for tightening restrictions between now and into the new year. I think that it will be something like Tier Three or perhaps tighter. I think we will get a tier 4 added on top. But it’s just a guess.’ 

Britain is slowly creeping one step closer to a de facto lockdown every day, with the UK confirming another 23,065 positive test results and 280 deaths yesterday.

Cases are up 8.6 per cent on the 21,242 announced last Thursday, while deaths have increased by 48 per cent in the same time. 

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Boris Johnson is facing renewed pressure from his medical officers to impose a nation-wide shutdown before and after Christmas in a bid to allow families to gather over the holidays

Boris Johnson is facing renewed pressure from his medical officers to impose a nation-wide shutdown before and after Christmas in a bid to allow families to gather over the holidays

Boris Johnson is facing renewed pressure from his medical officers to impose a nation-wide shutdown before and after Christmas in a bid to allow families to gather over the holidays

Boris Johnson is facing renewed pressure from his medical officers to impose a nation-wide shutdown before and after Christmas in a bid to allow families to gather over the holidays, and sources close so Sadiq Khan expect the capital to be locked down imminently.

Senior figures are warning that the UK’s three-tier system is not enough to ‘get on top of the numbers’, with deputy chief medical officer Jonathan Van-Tam reportedly beginning to change his mind over whether regional lockdowns will suppress the virus . He backed the move at a No 10 press conference last week

Presenting what one source called ‘very, very bleak’ data to a meeting of Covid-O, the the Cabinet subcommittee on coronavirus, he said that daily hospital admissions had reached the highest level since April at 1,404. 

Allowing people to visit family at Christmas will be a spreader event that could cause a spike in infections many times worse than that caused by the return of university students, experts believe.

But introducing national restrictions before and after Christmas, while lifting them for the big day could help minimise the impact. 

Almost 60 per cent of the population – around 32.6 million – will be under stricter rules by Monday, and it is understood London could be moved into the top tier in two weeks unless infection rates drop significantly.

Sixteen areas will move into the ‘high risk’ Tier Two at midnight including Oxford, Luton, East Riding of Yorkshire, Kingston Upon Hull, Derbyshire Dales, Derby and Staffordshire.

That means that more than 21.6 million face the restrictions that include a ban on socialising indoors with anyone from another household, whether at home or in bars, restaurants and cafes. 

A further 11 million will be in the ‘very high risk’ Tier Three from midnight on Sunday when Leeds and the rest of West Yorkshire are added to the places where pubs are closed unless serving food.

This will leave only 23.7million without enhanced restrictions.

With tougher restrictions in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, it means just over three-fifths of the UK population are living under extra lockdown restrictions.

HOW HAVE INFECTION RATES CHANGED IN YOUR AREA? 
Local authority name Sept 21 to 27 Sept 28 to Oct 4 Change Oct 5 to 11 Change Oct 12 to 18 Change Oct 19 to 25 Change
Barking and Dagenham 62 63.41 39.18% 98.17 54.82% 119.3 21.52% 131.51 10.23%
Barnet 43.2 86.39 267.77% 110.64 28.07% 114.68 3.65% 140.7 22.69%
Barnsley 76.56 148.66 336.85% 279.91 88.29% 457.33 63.38% 499.06 9.12%
Bath and North East Somerset 37.25 67.78 367.77% 120.03 77.09% 112.79 -6.03% 191.43 69.72%
Bedford 47.9 74.44 138.90% 81.37 9.31% 87.14 7.09% 88.29 1.32%
Bexley 28.19 56.39 141.40% 66.05 17.13% 82.97 25.62% 113.58 36.89%
Birmingham 147.92 159.31 28.64% 190.92 19.84% 227.36 19.09% 257.75 13.37%
Blackburn with Darwen 182.37 257.86 30.41% 446.24 73.06% 576.5 29.19% 774.24 34.30%
Blackpool 91.79 197.21 169.60% 288.28 46.18% 424.54 47.27% 425.97 0.34%
Bolton 244.13 265 9.80% 335.25 26.51% 442.01 31.84% 546.34 23.60%
Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole 25.55 74.12 252.95% 134.57 81.56% 144.44 7.33% 184.91 28.02%
Bracknell Forest 25.3 40.8 212.40% 53.04 30.00% 81.6 53.85% 84.86 4.00%
Bradford 184.34 293.27 98.37% 335.14 14.28% 395.72 18.08% 481.13 21.58%
Brent 50.64 79.45 181.74% 99.16 24.81% 98.55 -0.62% 113.41 15.08%
Brighton and Hove 21.66 62.22 448.68% 82.51 32.61% 93.51 13.33% 142.67 52.57%
Bristol, City of 28.27 66.47 275.54% 156.46 135.38% 245.37 56.83% 333.64 35.97%
Bromley 27.68 55.67 242.58% 70.11 25.94% 89.97 28.33% 108.93 21.07%
Buckinghamshire 24.82 48.35 182.75% 88.98 84.03% 86.77 -2.48% 104.6 20.55%
Bury 216.24 290.59 52.89% 389.55 34.05% 430.39 10.48% 526.21 22.26%
Calderdale 97.42 173.56 135.27% 242.6 39.78% 311.65 28.46% 410.49 31.72%
Cambridgeshire 18.06 45.29 355.18% 65.34 44.27% 67.48 3.28% 82.17 21.77%
Camden 27.4 55.55 138.11% 111.84 101.33% 121.84 8.94% 109.62 -10.03%
Central Bedfordshire 23.56 37.76 67.67% 51.27 35.78% 61.67 20.28% 71.37 15.73%
Cheshire East 61.17 141.35 287.90% 168.68 19.33% 173.11 2.63% 215.8 24.66%
Cheshire West and Chester 78.12 143.7 220.12% 191.21 33.06% 199.08 4.12% 214.53 7.76%
Cornwall and Isles of Scilly 40.4 26.58 32.17% 32 20.39% 30.78 -3.81% 44.95 46.04%
County Durham 110.55 201.29 209.30% 338.05 67.94% 329.56 -2.51% 278.44 -15.51%
Coventry 74.56 108.2 95.13% 166.34 53.73% 184.11 10.68% 199.99 8.63%
Croydon 32.58 66.46 307.98% 75.25 13.23% 79.39 5.50% 105.76 33.22%
Cumbria 51.2 86.6 252.03% 121.6 40.42% 152.4 25.33% 170.2 11.68%
Darlington 103.93 176.03 358.53% 206.92 17.55% 286.51 38.46% 296.81 3.59%
Derby 43.14 82.78 124.21% 134.08 61.97% 171.39 27.83% 328.8 91.84%
Derbyshire 44.35 93.44 201.23% 144.51 54.66% 186.5 29.06% 294.63 57.98%
Devon 18.82 84.37 957.27% 105.69 25.27% 78.52 -25.71% 69.79 -11.12%
Doncaster 62.84 147.81 177.73% 220.27 49.02% 350.76 59.24% 513.64 46.44%
Dorset 11.36 25.1 352.25% 60.76 142.07% 72.39 19.14% 103.3 42.70%
Dudley 56.28 79.29 90.28% 102.3 29.02% 150.81 47.42% 224.82 49.07%
Ealing 55.29 98.01 248.91% 139.85 42.69% 162.08 15.90% 212.4 31.05%
East Riding of Yorkshire 49.83 109.33 372.06% 133.36 21.98% 172.35 29.24% 257.35 49.32%
East Sussex 14.72 30.51 359.49% 44.86 47.03% 50.43 12.42% 58.32 15.65%
Enfield 42.54 72.8 158.52% 93.77 28.80% 137.21 46.33% 138.41 0.87%
Essex 26.66 48.35 176.92% 69.97 44.72% 90.25 28.98% 99.05 9.75%
Gateshead 162.33 241.02 83.08% 255.38 5.96% 259.34 1.55% 355.84 37.21%
Gloucestershire 19.62 40.5 200.00% 62 53.09% 62.63 1.02% 68.6 9.53%
Greenwich 36.47 50.7 217.27% 75.36 48.64% 85.43 13.36% 92.73 8.55%
Hackney and City of London 55.36 101.77 311.03% 132.37 30.07% 164.35 24.16% 156.79 -4.60%
Halton 265.82 343.1 80.49% 387.91 13.06% 340 -12.35% 312.96 -7.95%
Hammersmith and Fulham 45.91 75.08 238.96% 115.59 53.96% 163.12 41.12% 190.12 16.55%
Hampshire 16.78 35.08 219.20% 55.48 58.15% 68.35 23.20% 94.32 38.00%
Haringey 40.95 89.34 192.73% 116.88 30.83% 126.93 8.60% 142.57 12.32%
Harrow 42.2 95.95 244.28% 116.26 21.17% 127.81 9.93% 133.78 4.67%
Hartlepool 153.74 250.9 213.35% 274.39 9.36% 348.06 26.85% 335.24 -3.68%
Havering 58.18 60.49 80.46% 100.56 66.24% 126.76 26.05% 148.72 17.32%
Herefordshire, County of 12.97 22.3 152.83% 37.86 69.78% 54.46 43.85% 86.1 58.10%
Hertfordshire 30.94 66.83 166.79% 87.35 30.70% 90.79 3.94% 106.68 17.50%
Hillingdon 57.35 75.28 117.95% 102.32 35.92% 135.24 32.17% 160 18.31%
Hounslow 57.82 81.39 166.24% 105.7 29.87% 139.21 31.70% 177.15 27.25%
Isle of Wight 11.29 12.7 259.77% 17.63 38.82% 24.69 40.05% 31.04 25.72%
Islington 42.89 76.3 198.40% 90.32 18.37% 121.25 34.24% 126.62 4.43%
Kensington and Chelsea 24.34 81.34 262.80% 94.15 15.75% 135.14 43.54% 138.99 2.85%
Kent 16.44 34.46 240.51% 50.46 46.43% 54.25 7.51% 75.24 38.69%
Kingston upon Hull, City of 35.41 95.85 555.16% 107.01 11.64% 144.74 35.26% 279.08 92.81%
Kingston upon Thames 33.24 72.11 255.57% 101.97 41.41% 144.78 41.98% 184.22 27.24%
Kirklees 118.92 192.37 106.85% 254.44 32.27% 300.37 18.05% 388.82 29.45%
Knowsley 335.41 602.54 182.30% 700.64 16.28% 663.52 -5.30% 542.88 -18.18%
Lambeth 41.71 77.6 272.00% 92.94 19.77% 122.38 31.68% 137.1 12.03%
Lancashire 160.6 246.02 139.88% 347.6 41.29% 387.44 11.46% 426.22 10.01%
Leeds 170.46 379.13 239.39% 394.63 4.09% 393.5 -0.29% 388.71 -1.22%
Leicester 111.51 140.31 23.94% 184.06 31.18% 222.46 20.86% 326.06 46.57%
Leicestershire 51.12 92.19 124.47% 161.58 75.27% 176.87 9.46% 272.89 54.29%
Lewisham 34 64.09 206.21% 77.16 20.39% 79.13 2.55% 90.57 14.46%
Lincolnshire 27.85 63.19 238.82% 92.61 46.56% 103.65 11.92% 160.93 55.26%
Liverpool 342.94 580.27 186.43% 681.47 17.44% 584.69 -14.20% 462.01 -20.98%
Luton 61.96 72.28 41.28% 89.65 24.03% 141.28 57.59% 150.2 6.31%
Manchester 307.67 558.19 215.22% 474.62 -14.97% 438.99 -7.51% 486.2 10.75%
Medway 17.59 30.87 177.36% 38.77 25.59% 45.59 17.59% 80.77 77.17%
Merton 26.63 47.93 266.72% 77.95 62.63% 95.38 22.36% 134.11 40.61%
Middlesbrough 136.19 259.61 375.30% 280.89 8.20% 351.82 25.25% 353.95 0.61%
Milton Keynes 24.86 45.28 139.20% 65.69 45.08% 63.46 -3.39% 95.75 50.88%
Newcastle upon Tyne 299.19 492.37 204.91% 466.94 -5.16% 313.39 -32.88% 312.07 -0.42%
Newham 66.26 75.04 100.75% 103.36 37.74% 129.41 25.20% 142.16 9.85%
Norfolk 17.3 38.01 228.52% 50.89 33.89% 63.89 25.55% 84.71 32.59%
North East Lincolnshire 35.1 76.46 481.00% 162.32 112.29% 237.52 46.33% 339.68 43.01%
North Lincolnshire 47.59 94.03 224.02% 151.49 61.11% 170.06 12.26% 191.54 12.63%
North Somerset 27.9 39.99 56.33% 54.87 37.21% 71.15 29.67% 130.2 82.99%
North Tyneside 156.32 232.31 137.93% 251.55 8.28% 210.67 -16.25% 279.44 32.64%
North Yorkshire 67.47 113.1 188.82% 134.29 18.74% 141.09 5.06% 164.39 16.51%
Northamptonshire 24.43 60.14 198.02% 96.25 60.04% 107.53 11.72% 127.31 18.39%
Northumberland 171.2 180.19 114.38% 175.54 -2.58% 176.47 0.53% 179.88 1.93%
Nottingham 94.32 609.79 1523.94% 927.91 52.17% 610.69 -34.19% 427.46 -30.00%
Nottinghamshire 49.74 137.04 387.17% 220.47 60.88% 272.27 23.50% 325.03 19.38%
Oldham 193.58 295.64 62.27% 382.52 29.39% 468.56 22.49% 661.72 41.22%
Oxfordshire 25.59 64.48 309.14% 86.31 33.86% 89.35 3.52% 111.9 25.24%
Peterborough 35.1 62.3 223.13% 81.58 30.95% 95.92 17.58% 125.09 30.41%
Plymouth 23.27 37.77 80.03% 68.68 81.84% 103.01 49.99% 141.55 37.41%
Portsmouth 32.11 50.72 194.54% 104.7 106.43% 144.25 37.77% 163.79 13.55%
Reading 29.67 43.89 343.78% 74.79 70.40% 95.81 28.11% 109.41 14.19%
Redbridge 73.06 110.74 78.84% 125.15 13.01% 136.95 9.43% 168.4 22.96%
Redcar and Cleveland 70.73 173.53 395.80% 210.72 21.43% 280.71 33.21% 323 15.07%
Richmond upon Thames 39.39 108.58 593.36% 144.94 33.49% 153.02 5.57% 146.96 -3.96%
Rochdale 202.78 335.41 126.06% 429.83 28.15% 508.97 18.41% 574.16 12.81%
Rotherham 100.98 203.08 228.66% 279.57 37.66% 386.19 38.14% 493.2 27.71%
Rutland 42.58 85.16 580.19% 132.74 55.87% 107.7 -18.86% 95.17 -11.63%
Salford 195.49 317.19 114.36% 390.21 23.02% 495.3 26.93% 588.79 18.88%
Sandwell 113.26 114.78 19.67% 146.45 27.59% 216.17 47.61% 275.23 27.32%
Sefton 226.84 371.19 194.83% 477.19 28.56% 438.48 -8.11% 383.49 -12.54%
Sheffield 121.74 385.74 519.76% 455.16 18.00% 431.05 -5.30% 420.45 -2.46%
Shropshire 42.4 59.11 193.79% 86.34 46.07% 84.48 -2.15% 119.45 41.39%
Slough 82.92 86.93 217.03% 92.28 6.15% 155.14 68.12% 150.46 -3.02%
Solihull 90.12 119.7 61.87% 174.7 45.95% 209.36 19.84% 223.69 6.84%
Somerset 13.87 32.9 362.73% 39.13 18.94% 45.89 17.28% 61.36 33.71%
South Gloucestershire 24.2 58.58 255.25% 88.04 50.29% 118.56 34.67% 192.22 62.13%
South Tyneside 221.89 274.88 37.42% 245.07 -10.84% 235.14 -4.05% 222.55 -5.35%
Southampton 19.01 42.77 199.93% 60.19 40.73% 74.05 23.03% 114.05 54.02%
Southend-on-Sea 31.13 42.59 143.79% 48.05 12.82% 68.81 43.20% 82.46 19.84%
Southwark 47.99 60.53 114.42% 79.35 31.09% 95.66 20.55% 121.69 27.21%
St. Helens 254.17 347.76 167.24% 443.56 27.55% 437.47 -1.37% 420.85 -3.80%
Staffordshire 38.66 82.2 173.82% 121.2 47.45% 169.06 39.49% 262.4 55.21%
Stockport 110.42 227.32 162.62% 297.18 30.73% 299.91 0.92% 396.02 32.05%
Stockton-on-Tees 100.84 233.6 339.02% 342.54 46.64% 357.24 4.29% 447.43 25.25%
Stoke-on-Trent 49.54 60.46 54.99% 118.19 95.48% 192.3 62.70% 301.51 56.79%
Suffolk 8.41 33.49 298.22% 46.37 38.46% 55.03 18.68% 72.63 31.98%
Sunderland 215.7 296.72 108.61% 299.24 0.85% 321.92 7.58% 323.72 0.56%
Surrey 27.08 66.29 350.65% 83.01 25.22% 94.8 14.20% 106.58 12.43%
Sutton 23.75 36.83 162.14% 81.9 122.37% 90.14 10.06% 114.85 27.41%
Swindon 19.35 27.9 181.82% 45.46 62.94% 69.31 52.46% 103.96 49.99%
Tameside 174.4 245.48 74.84% 322.75 31.48% 371.31 15.05% 513.92 38.41%
Telford and Wrekin 43.92 56.16 173.02% 81.73 45.53% 154.01 88.44% 211.28 37.19%
Thurrock 24.09 43.02 226.16% 75.14 74.66% 122.17 62.59% 157.74 29.12%
Torbay 14.68 49.9 466.40% 82.19 64.71% 100.54 22.33% 126.23 25.55%
Tower Hamlets 62.51 85.61 164.80% 97.92 14.38% 133.64 36.48% 148.73 11.29%
Trafford 139.88 279.75 277.28% 336.63 20.33% 327.36 -2.75% 429.74 31.27%
Wakefield 86.13 163.93 243.96% 238.87 45.71% 310.64 30.05% 401.08 29.11%
Walsall 83.37 122.25 81.76% 168.84 38.11% 211.57 25.31% 305.8 44.54%
Waltham Forest 47.3 79.43 147.21% 94.95 19.54% 102.53 7.98% 135.75 32.40%
Wandsworth 37.92 71.89 243.48% 101.31 40.92% 114.35 12.87% 143.78 25.74%
Warrington 197.61 268.55 102.15% 337.6 25.71% 348.55 3.24% 406.64 16.67%
Warwickshire 40.49 70.94 98.05% 101.05 42.44% 126.14 24.83% 166.63 32.10%
West Berkshire 22.72 39.13 181.92% 49.23 25.81% 57.43 16.66% 83.94 46.16%
West Sussex 21.64 33.1 148.69% 43.06 30.09% 50.35 16.93% 73.96 46.89%
Westminster 29.08 71.18 220.63% 88.02 23.66% 108.3 23.04% 135.08 24.73%
Wigan 160.04 274.45 124.39% 407.71 48.56% 460.66 12.99% 655.99 42.40%
Wiltshire 15.2 32.8 221.57% 53.8 64.02% 68 26.39% 84.2 23.82%
Windsor and Maidenhead 31.7 80.57 335.75% 113.59 40.98% 141.33 24.42% 112.93 -20.09%
Wirral 193.82 252.77 61.86% 315.42 24.79% 267.27 -15.27% 282.71 5.78%
Wokingham 28.64 45 327.76% 61.36 36.36% 76.55 24.76% 95.26 24.44%
Wolverhampton 83.16 75.94 21.21% 133.66 76.01% 191 42.90% 246.43 29.02%
Worcestershire 43.47 70.83 232.22% 93.15 31.51% 105.24 12.98% 128.4 22.01%
York 72.64 195.14 341.89% 266.36 36.50% 307.19 15.33% 244.99 -20.25%

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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