SOMERSET is being moved into ‘very high risk’ Tier 3 of the Covid-19 restrictions from Boxing Day.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock made the announcement in a briefing this afternoon (Wednesday).
It is joined in moving up from Tier 2 to 3 by Bristol, Gloucestershire, North Somerset, Swindon, the Isle of Wight, the New Forest and Northamptonshire, as well as Cheshire and Warrington.
Bristol and North Somerset were only moved down to Tier 2 on Saturday.
In Tier 3, hospitality businesses such as bars, pubs, cafes, restaurants, and social clubs must close except for takeaway, delivery and click and collect services, while indoor entertainment venues are shut.
Somerset has witnessed a sharp rise in positive Covid-19 tests in recent days, with the rate of infection rising to around 150 per 100,000 of population.
There are currently more people in hospital in Somerset than there were at the height of the first wave of the pandemic.