COVID-19 pandemic: British PM Boris Johnson announces new nationwide lockdown in England


British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced a new nationwide lockdown in England in view of a fresh spike in COVID-19 cases in the country. In a televised address to the nation, Johnson urged people to stay indoors except for reasons permitted by law such as shopping essential items, going for COVID-19 test and escaping domestic abuses.

Boris Johnson

All schools and colleges in the country will once close with students being forced to remote learning until the middle of February.

Johnson said that he was pleased to learn about the vaccination programme running in full speed adding that more people in the UK had been vaccinated than entire Europe combined. Johnson said that the top four high-risk groups would have been vaccinated by mid-February.

Johnson’s announcement for a new nationwide lockdown for England came hours after Scotland issued a stay-at-home order and joined Wales in closing classrooms for most pupils.

What new rules mean to ordinary people in England, according to BBC:

  • People cannot leave their homes except for certain reasons, like the first lockdown last March
  • These include essential medical needs, food shopping, exercise and work for those who cannot do so from home
  • All schools and colleges will close to most pupils from Tuesday with remote learning until February half term
  • Early years settings such as nurseries will stay open
  • End-of-year exams will not take place this summer as normal
  • Elsewhere, university students should not return to campuses and will be taught online
  • Restaurants can continue to offer delivery for food, but takeaway alcohol will be banned
    Outdoor sports venues – such as golf courses, tennis courts and outside gyms – must close
  • Amateur team sports are not allowed, but elite sport such as Premier League football can continue