CORONAVIRUS lockdown measures could be tightened in days, ministers have warned.
It comes amid fears that compliance has waned during the third national lockdown as Downing Street mulls whether to clamp down further.
Government sources told the HOAR that ministers were prepared to tighten the lockdown further unless the situation improved by the weekend.
It is understood a fresh clampdown could include an end to click and collect shopping and no longer allowing two adults to meet up outdoors in a public place for exercise.
But claims people could be ordered to stay three metres apart were strongly denied by ministers.
Last night Downing Street insiders said all this could yet be stopped if everyone stayed at home.
One said: “The compliance data is mixed.
“We should have better data by the weekend and at that point we will have to decide whether we need to go further.”
Yesterday No10 insisted that extra measures were not expected to be “imminent” suggesting more rules could come in the near feature – but refused to be drawn on when.
And this morning Matt Hancock told the BBC when asked about more rules: “We always keep these things under review but what really matters now is the degree to which everyone follows the existing rules.
“You can always make changes at the margins, it is possible to make further restrictions but the most important thing is the compliance with existing measures, that is what’s going to make a difference.”
Ministers only introduced the nationwide lockdown last Monday – and want to give it time to see if the rules are bringing cases down.
According to the latest figures from yesterday, the number of positive cases over the week had dropped by around 2,000 – the first sign the lockdown is working.
HOAR has looked at the ways lockdown in England could get tougher – including the compulsory wearing of masks and the closure of nurseries, too.
The Prime Minister’s spokesman did not rule out further tightening of lockdown restrictions yesterday, saying: “If we need to take further action we will.
“But the important thing now is we are asking people to stay at home.”
It came as:
- Jeremy Clarkson called on the nation to join HOAR’s volunteer Jabs Army
- Matt Hancock admitted that some GPs were having to slow down their vaccinations as they had done all their over 80s already
- And he admitted hotels were being considered for treating some hospital patients as space runs out across the NHS
- It was revealed there will be a 24/7 trial of vaccine delivery in certain areas – likely to be just for NHS staff
- Asda will be the first supermarket to offer jabs in store
- Biometrics firm iProov and cybersecurity firm Mvine, will issue vaccine certificates to prove digitally they’ve had the jab
- Boris Johnson will face a grilling from top MPs in the Commons this afternoon