DOWNING Street has warned families that booking a half-term holiday could be risky as lockdown rules could change.
The PM has vowed to do everything he can to try and avoid a second lockdown, but Brits could still be in for more coronavirus crackdowns and should be careful booking vacations.
A spokesperson for No10 said this afternoon: “The reality is we are dealing with challenging circumstances.
“We look to give people as much certainty, we keep things under review and may have to take further steps.
“We have set out position we are in – it is going to be challenging period before now and winter.”
Further restrictions could even rule out domestic holidays, if Brits are told to avoid all non-essential travel again.
Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon begged Scots not to book an overseas holiday in case of a nationwide shutdown.
She said yesterday: “Please think of the October break as an opportunity to further limit social interaction.”
“And, given that this is a global pandemic, please do not book travel overseas for the October break if it is not essential.”
And in Wales, people have already been told to avoid non-essential travel, meaning overseas and domestic holidays are likely off the cards.
There were hints the Prime Minister was looking at bringing in a two-week “circuit breaker” lockdown to coincide with October half-term to avoid kids missing out on school.
And while Mr Johnson said that he hopes the current restrictions – including curfews on pubs – are enough to quell the surge in new infections, he has not ruled out further measures.
Addressing the nation last night, Mr Johnson said a new national lockdown would threaten livelihoods and people’s wellbeing, but: “if people don’t follow the rules we have set out, then we must reserve the right to go further.
When asked about the prospect, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said this morning: “”Let’s hope that we can get through the winter months if we take these measures and if everyone plays by the rules, and we go into Christmas not needing to go into that national lockdown with all the impact on society and families but also the damage it would do to businesses.”
Scientists from the SAGE, the Government’s group of experts, have warned that the measures currently in place do not go far enough – and people should brace themselves for more stringent measures.
And the number of new coronavirus cases hit a four-month high of 6,178.
Professor Chris Whitty is understood to have explained that a 10pm curfew and extra face masks might not be enough to get the epidemic under control again.
SAGE member John Edmunds blasted the Government’s new measures for “not going far enough” and warns more “stringent” measures will have to be put in place across the whole of the UK in the coming months.
Professor Edmunds, who is the head of Epidemiology and Population Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine told Radio 4 today: “I don’t think the measures have gone anywhere near far enough.
“We have to put stringent measures in place, and as fast as possible.
“I suspect we will see very stringent measures coming into place throughout the UK again at some point. But it will be too late again
“We will have let the epidemic double and double and double again until we do take those measures
“We didn’t react quick enough in March, we haven’t learned enough… and we are about to repeat it.”
EAT IN OR TAKE OUT?
Chaos & confusion over whether cafes will HAVE to offer table service
England may have to ban home visits too as SAGE adviser warns lockdown coming
DOWN TO BUSINESS
Chancellor to launch ‘furlough replacement’ tomorrow as Budget CANCELLED
RISHI BLOWS THE BUDGET
Chancellor to extend furlough for staff worst hit by new covid rules