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Maidstone – Tier 3 Lockdown Announced

Following the government announcement today that Maidstone borough is set to enter Tier 3 – Very High Alert, as part of the national Covid Winter Plan, Maidstone Borough Council (MBC), is asking everyone to keep pulling together and continue to protect each other.

Tier 3 brings with it different restrictions and will be put in place as the second lockdown ends in England on 2 December. Prime Minister, Boris Johnson has introduced a revised three tier system which will be reviewed every 14 days as part of regional approach, and this will last until March 2021. 

The government’s revised ‘strengthened’ tier system has been put in place to prevent a return to growing infections and are to target the toughest measures in areas where the virus is more prevalent and which have seen increases in the rate of infection.

As there has recently been a rising trend in Covid-19 cases in Maidstone and across the borough, the Council is encouraging everyone to both follow the public health advice of regularly washing hands, wearing face masks where needed and socially distancing to protect each other and to familiarise themselves with the Tier 3 restrictions which are below.

The Council will provide support for both residents and businesses in line with the national systems. Our partners in the community and voluntary sector have provided brilliant support during the public health emergency and will also continue to do so. More details are in the notes below

To protect lives and livelihoods while the borough is in Tier 3 restrictions 

  • You must not meet socially indoors or in most outdoor places with anybody you do not live with, or who is not in your support bubble, this includes in any private garden or at most outdoor venues
  • You must not socialise in a group of more than 6 in some other outdoor public spaces, including parks, beaches, countryside accessible to the public, a public garden, grounds of a heritage site or castle, or a sports facility – this is called the ‘rule of 6’
  • Hospitality settings, such as bars (including shisha venues), pubs, cafes and restaurants are closed – they are permitted to continue sales by takeaway, click-and-collect, drive-through or delivery services.
  • Accommodation such as hotels, B&Bs, campsites, and guest houses must close. There are several exemptions, such as for those who use these venues as their main residence, and those requiring the venues where it is reasonably necessary for work or education and training 
  • Indoor entertainment and tourist venues must close. This includes:
    • indoor play centres and areas, including trampolining parks and soft play
    • casinos
    • bingo halls
    • bowling alleys
    • skating rinks
    • amusement arcades and adult gaming centres
    • laser quests and escape rooms
    • cinemas, theatres and concert halls
    • snooker halls
  • Indoor attractions at mostly outdoor entertainment venues must also close (indoor shops, through-ways and public toilets at such attractions can remain open). This includes indoor attractions within:
    • zoos, safari parks, and wildlife reserves
    • aquariums, visitor attractions at farms, and other animal attractions
    • model villages
    • museums, galleries, and sculpture parks
    • botanical gardens, biomes, or greenhouses
    • theme parks, circuses, fairgrounds, and funfairs
    • visitor attractions at film studios, heritage sites such as castles and stately homes
    • landmarks including observation decks and viewing platforms
  • Leisure and sports facilities may continue to stay open, but group exercise classes (including fitness and dance) should not go ahead. Saunas and steam rooms should close
  • There should be no public attendance at spectator sport or indoor performances and large business events should not be taking place. Elite sport events may continue to take place without spectators
  • Large outdoor events (performances and shows) should not take place, with the exception of drive-in events
  • Places of worship remain open, but you must not attend with or socialise with anyone outside of your household or support bubble while you are there, unless a legal exemption applies
  • Weddings and funerals can go ahead with restrictions on the number of attendees – 15 people can attend wedding ceremonies, wedding receptions are not allowed, 30 people can attend funeral ceremonies, 15 people can attend linked commemorative events
  • Organised outdoor sport, physical activity and exercise classes can continue, however higher-risk contact activity should not take place
  • Organised indoor sport, physical activity and exercise classes cannot take place indoors. There are exceptions for indoor disability sport, sport for educational purposes and supervised sport and physical activity for under-18s
  • You can continue to travel to venues or amenities which are open, but should aim to reduce the number of journeys you make where possible
  • Avoid travelling to other parts of the UK, including for overnight stays other than where necessary, such as for work, education, youth services, to receive medical treatment, or because of caring responsibilities. You can travel through other areas as part of a longer journey

Full details of the new tier restrictions are available on the government website:https://www.gov.uk/guidance/local-restriction-tiers-what-you-need-to-know

For those needing extra support the following organisations are available:

Kent Together helpline

Maidstone Borough Council is working with Kent County Council to provide a

24 hour helpline which has been set up to support vulnerable people in Kent who need urgent help, supplies or medication.

If you are vulnerable and have an urgent need that cannot be met through existing support networks, you can contact the Kent Together helpline via www.kent.gov.uk/protectkent or by calling on 03000 41 92 92.

You can also report your concerns about the welfare of someone else.

Mutual aid

Find your local COVID-19 community group in your area

Citizens Advice Maidstone

www.maidstonecab.org.uk

Tel: 0344 848 7978

Age UK Maidstone

www.ageuk.org.uk/maidstone

Email: info@ageukmaidstone.org.uk

Tel: 01622 753618

Involve Kent

www.involvekent.org.uk

Email: office@involvekent.org.uk

Tel: 03000 810005

Money Advice Service

www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk

Maidstone and Weald SamaritansFreephone open 24 hours a day: 116 123

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