Live: Coronavirus – A daily bulletin of the cases in and around York

Photograph: Needpix
4 months ago

Council to send Covid-19 support leaflet and newsletter to every York home

With some residents unable to access the internet, City of York Council has commissioned a leaflet drop across the city.

Over the next few weeks, the council will be sending residents:

  • A leaflet promoting how to be a volunteer and what to do if you need help;
  • A letter thanking the city for its resolve and containing important health information for people to keep;
  • A special copy of Our City, the resident newsletter bringing together information about resident support and council services in one place.

The council has also introduced an e-newsletter providing a weekly update about support and guidance direct to resident’s mailboxes during this extraordinary time.

For more information to receive the e-newsletter visit the council website.

Cllr Michael Pavlovic
4 months ago

‘Hampers of hope’ for vulnerable children and their families to be funded in York

Terrific charity The Island provides support for vulnerable children and young people across York.

The Island usually provides hampers through the donations it collects in local supermarkets.

Now councillors have agreed to fund ‘hampers of hope’ for children and their families supported by The Island.

At the suggestion of the Labour group, seven wards represented by 17 Labour councillors and 2 Green councillors are to pool part of their ward funding.

They will commit the same £1,337 from each ward totalling £9,360 – almost 40% of The Island’s £25,000 fundraising target.

Cllr Bob Webb said: “The Island does some amazing work for local children and through funding these emergency hampers of hope, we can support the charity to not only provide food and other provisions, but also learning resources and access to an emergency 24 hour helpline.


“The hampers will help support a reduction in family tension as well as improved mental health and well-being. Advice and guidance will be available to families at an early stage so The Island can help with any emerging challenges they are having.”

Cllr Labour’s spokesperson for communities, Coun. Michael Pavlovic, said the funding allocation was the first of what is expected to be others as the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic becomes better understood.

“We’re pleased to agree this funding to families across the wards we represent, who fully deserve this support at an incredibly challenging time.

“We need to see how the situation develops in the coming few weeks before looking at what other funding allocations we may need to make.

“It’s obvious that the level of support some of our residents need will not be as readily available with the current restrictions, and we need to avoid a situation where people feel cut adrift.”

4 months ago

Saturday coronavirus update: York cases level off, another increase in North Yorkshire

The good news is there are no new confirmed cases of coronavirus in York today (Saturday, 4 April).

Unfortunately, the number in North Yorkshire continues to rise – and the figure is now above the 200 barrier. There are now 218 confirmed cases in the county, up from 193 the day before.

Here are some of the key statistics (yesterday’s figures in brackets):

  • Total UK cases: 41,903 (38,168)
  • Daily confirmed UK cases: 3,735 (4,450)
  • Total UK deaths: 4,313(3,605)
  • Confirmed cases in York: 57 (57)
  • Confirmed cases in North Yorkshire: 218 (193)
  • Confirmed cases in East Yorkshire: 78 (72)


New cases of coronavirus appear to have stabilised but it is not the time to “take our foot off the pedal”, a healthcare chief has said, as ministers pleaded with the public to obey social distancing rules despite the warm weather.

Professor Stephen Powis, NHS England’s national medical director, made the warning as the latest figures showed the recorded death toll from the virus in the UK has risen above 4,000, including a five-year-old child.

Speaking alongside Michael Gove at the daily Downing Street press conference, Prof Powis said: “The new cases in the UK have continued to rise but in the last few days they have stabilised.”

He said there had been a “bit of a plateauing” of rates of people being taken to hospital in London, but warned: “This is not the time to be complacent and to take our foot off the pedal.

“We need to continue to comply with those instructions because that will translate in the next week or two into a reduction in hospital admissions.”

Photograph: Victoria Jones/PA Wire
5 months ago

Wednesday’s figures show another rise in coronavirus cases in both York and North Yorkshire

There are three more confirmed coronavirus cases in York, figures today revealed (Wednesday, 1 April).

That means the city’s number of known cases has risen from 32 to 35.

There has also been a rise in the confirmed cases in North Yorkshire, from 122 to 149.

Here are some of the key figures (yesterday’s number in brackets).

  • Total UK cases: 29,474 (25,150)
  • Daily confirmed UK cases: 4,324 (3,009)
  • Total UK deaths: 2,352 (1,789)
  • Confirmed cases in York: 35 (32)
  • Confirmed cases in North Yorkshire: 149 (122)
  • Confirmed cases in East Yorkshire: 46 (38)


Earlier we reported that there were three more coronavirus deaths in the York NHS Trust.

Meanwhile a York infections expert has called on the government to commandeer labs up and down the country to ramp up testing for Covid-19.

The Macmillan mascot Hero makes friends with racegoers at a previous race day. Photograph: Macmillan
5 months ago

Macmillan Charity Raceday called off

One of the highlights of both the sporting and charity calendars has been cancelled.

The Macmillan Charity Raceday, due to take place on 13 June, has been called off. It was the 50th anniversary event.

In a statement on its website, organisers said:

“In these uncertain times, Macmillan and York Races wanted to give a degree of clarity to their participants and supporters.

“The British Horseracing Authority has currently suspended racing until at least the end of April 2020 following Government advice. While York Racecourse’s season does not start until mid-May and Macmillan Charity Raceday is not until Saturday 13 June 2020, there is sufficient uncertainty that it was felt best to make this decision early.

“If racing resumes by June then York Racecourse would still hold Macmillan Charity Raceday but the fundraising aspect of the day would be scaled back.

“The fundraising activities being postponed include the Ernest Cooper Macmillan Ride of their Lives, the Jump of their Lives skydive, fundraising lunch and auction.”

5 months ago

‘We are facing perhaps the greatest public health threat in our lifetime’

The chief executive of York NHS Trust says coronavirus is ‘perhaps the greatest public health threat in our lifetime’.

In a video posted to the York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust Twitter channel, Simon Morritt paid tribute to the staff working so hard in highly trying circumstances.

This is his message in full:

  • In the last few weeks, I have visited our emergency departments, critical care wards, and the wards that will care for patients with Covid-19 on both of our acute sites.

    And I’m truly humbled by the effort and energy of everyone who is working hard to make sure we’re ready.

    We know of course that our team goes beyond our frontline clinical staff. And I doubt there is anyone who works for this trust who hasn’t been contributing to this effort. So thank you all.

    It is an extraordinary time we’re living in, and we are facing perhaps the greatest public health threat in our lifetime.

    Please keep safe – and continue to look out for each other.

The City faithful at Bootham Crescent. Photograph © Ian Parker on Flickr
5 months ago

York City fans in limbo as National League North suspends season indefinitely

York City are top of the league – and will stay there for the foreseeable future, without another game in sight.

The National League board met today and decided to suspend its competitions indefinitely – including National League North.

In a statement the National League said:

  • The National League is currently obtaining specialist legal advice, is consulting regularly with The Football Association and other stakeholders, and is committed to involving its member clubs in a pending decision on how best to conclude the 2019/20 season.

York City FC issued a statement of their own, saying: “York City Football Club will continue liaise with the league and fellow clubs regarding this matter and update supporters with any new information.”

5 months ago

Here are the supermarket queues in west York

Some helpful queue counting here, courtesy of former councillor Steve Galloway:

The Fountain Garden outside York Art Gallery during Bloom! 2018. Photograph: Richard McDougall
5 months ago

York’s Bloom! Festival will not go ahead this year – but will be back next summer

Make It York has today announced that Bloom! – York’s festival of horticulture – will not go ahead this summer.

The event was planned to take place across the city from 20-28 June, but has been cancelled due to the escalating uncertainties surrounding the impact of Covid-19.

MD of Make It York Sean Bullick said:

  • It is with deep sadness that we have made this decision, but ultimately it is the right thing to do given the uncertainties that we all face as a result of the ongoing coronavirus situation.

    We have had discussions with our festival main sponsor, York BID and our other valued partners and sponsors across the city and we are all in agreement that this is, unfortunately, a necessary step we must take at this time.

The BID and Make It York are now looking at how to bring Bloom! back in 2021.

Further details will be announced later in the year.

5 months ago

This chart shows the steep rise in York coronavirus cases – and how the city compares

The chart from Centre For Cities
The steep rise in coronavirus cases in York is shown in this chart by the Centre For Cities.

At present the city is doing better than many, based on the confirmed cases per 100,000 of the population. See the graph below. Enter York in the search box to see the city on its own:

The Centre for Cities says:

“The lockdown policies that the Government have introduced to slow the spread of coronavirus have had a huge economic impact. Some parts of the country will feel the negative effects more acutely than others.

“Places with stronger highly-skilled information-based economies – mostly in the Greater South East – have been able to more easily adapt to working from home, ensuring that some parts the economy continues to function.

“However, other areas – mostly in the North and Midlands – with weaker low-skill service-based economies have been less able to do this.

Harrogate Convention Centre. Photograph © Google Street View
5 months ago

An 800-bed coronavirus hospital is to be set up in North Yorkshire

The government is to create a large field hospital in Harrogate for coronavirus cases.

In a scoop, the FT reports that the UK’s fifth temporary hospital will be created at Harrogate Convention Centre.

The Harrogate hospital will treat patients from across Yorkshire and would be about a fifth the size as the NHS Nightingale, the coronavirus hospital at the Excel Centre in London.

That would mean the North Yorkshire version would have about 800 beds.


According to Andy Bounds and Helen Warrell in the FT:

  • The Ministry of Defence, which supplied military engineers and logistics experts to help build the Nightingale Hospital, has received a formal request to help set up the Harrogate site, but has not yet started work on the project.

    Andrew Jones, the local Conservative MP, said Harrogate would be “pleased to play its part in the national effort against this virus”.

    The Ministry of Defence said the armed forces were “supporting the NHS to understand where further facilities could be set up in other areas of the country”.

Carluccio’s opens in York
Inside Carluccio's in St Helen's Square, York
5 months ago

Carluccio’s update: Restaurant chain ceases trading and ‘could be mothballed’

As expected, restaurant chain Carluccio’s has gone into administration.

Directors of the group, which has branches in Fenwick and St Helen’s Square, called in the administrators “after a sustained period of challenging trading conditions, which have been exacerbated by Covid-19 and the broader issues currently facing the UK’s retail and hospitality sector,” a statement released today (Monday, 30 March) said.

“This meant the company faced significant cashflow pressures and as a result was ultimately unable to meet its financial obligations as they were due.”

We reported two days ago that Carluccio’s was on the brink of collapse.

Carluccio’s opens in York
It opened in the former Terry’s shop in 2017

Geoff Rowley and Phil Reynolds, partners at specialist business advisory firm FRP, have been appointed administrators.

They said their primary job “is the rescue of the company”. They are exploring the opportunity to mothball the business utilising government support, as well as speaking to interested parties regarding the sale of all or parts of the business

Mr Rowley said they will access the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to furlough the majority of the company’s 2,000 employees whilst they assess all available options.

“As this fast-moving situation progresses we will remain in regular communication with all employees and key stakeholders, and will provide a further update in due course,” he said.

Interested parties should contact: clengagementteam@frpadvisory.com. The chain has 71 restaurants and delis across the UK.

Police must enforce social distancing in Yorkshire’s dangerous workplaces, union says
5 months ago

Police must enforce social distancing in Yorkshire’s dangerous workplaces, union says

 
GMB, the union for warehouse workers, has called on the police to enforce social distancing in dangerous workplaces.

Neil Derrick (pictured above), the union’s regional secretary for Yorkshire and North Derbyshire has written to police and crime commissioners across the region.

GMB is asking police are being asked to investigate potentially dangerous warehouses including Asos, Pretty Little Thing and Spectrum for Arcadia.

Neil Derrick, GMB Regional Secretary, said:

“If workers were gathering cheek by jowl in the street the police would be down on them like a ton of bricks – and rightly so.

“So why should it be different in these warehouses?

“This is fashion – It’s not essential and even if it was thy need to operate safely.

“If bosses can’t operate safely, they must shut down until they can.”

5 months ago

York police carry out more spot checks on motorists

York police are back on the roads checking where people are going today.

They have a checkpoint in place at Tadcaster Road.

Journalist Jerry Ibbotson says cars heading out of town are being pulled over into the Marriott Hotel where their drivers will be questioned.


Last week we reported how North Yorkshire Police were brining in a series of checks.

Assistant Chief Constable Mike Walker said: “We ask people not to make non-essential journeys, and to understand the definition of essential.

“We sincerely hope that we won’t have to resort to enforcement action, but if people do not comply, we will.”

5 months ago

More support is needed for low-income families, say York experts

Low-income families should receive extra financial support as part of the Government’s response to COVID-19, say University of York experts.

An increase in benefits for children is needed to prevent a rise in child poverty, the authors of the study say.

In response to the pandemic, the Government has raised Universal and Working Tax Credit payments by £20 per week, bringing benefit payments to their highest level (relative to average earnings) since 1998/9.

The researchers modelled the impact of these measures and found that they will only reduce child poverty by less than two per cent. Household poverty will also only see an improvement of less than one percent.


But when the researchers looked at what the impact of an increase in child benefit of £10 per-child per-week would be, they found that it would reduce child poverty by five per cent and household poverty by between one and two per cent.

Co-author of the report, Dr Antonia Keung from the Department of Social Policy and Social Work at the University of York, said: “The needs of families with children have not been recognised in the Covid-19 measures.

“An increase in child benefit would be much more effective than the announced increases in Universal Credit and Working Tax Credit. It would reduce child poverty more and also reduce household poverty more, not least because households with children are much more likely to be poor.”

5 months ago

Join the sponsored York ‘Palathon’ and help raise money for the city’s food banks

York man John Bibby is urging everyone to join the York Palathon.

The idea is to walk a mile per day, for 26 days, starting on 1 April and finishing on 27 April. So then you will have walked a marathon.

John from Heworth will be hobbling round his garden 100 times per day, starting at 11am on April 1st.

He is currently waiting for two new hips and says the Palathon will keep him fit.

John is encouraging others to join in – while keeping your social distance of course:

And he would like help with things like setting up a website, arranging an optional Zoom meeting for participants, and liaising re donations.

Please email John if you can help: yorkpalathon@gmail.com

5 months ago

The stats for Saturday show coronavirus cases have risen again in York and North Yorkshire

Police patrol an empty cyclepath next the the Millennium Bridge in York. Photograph: NYP York City on Twitter

There have been two more confirmed cases of coronavirus in York.

The number of official cases of the virus has risen from 17 to 19, the figures for today (Saturday, 28 March) show.

In North Yorkshire the rate of increase has slowed – there are 75 recorded cases, compared to 69 yesterday.

Here are some more of the key statistics:

  • Total UK cases: 17,089
  • Daily confirmed UK cases: 2,546
  • Total UK deaths: 1,019
  • Confirmed cases in York: 19
  • Confirmed cases in North Yorkshire: 75
  • Confirmed cases in East Yorkshire: 26

The number of people tested in the UK for coronavirus has now reached 120,776.

Just under 50,000 tests (47,958) were carried out in the seven days to 9am March 28.

In the previous seven days the number was 35,072.

The total number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK now stands at 17,089. One week ago, on March 21, the total stood at 5,018.

5 months ago

‘It’s surreal how different the city looks’: York’s deserted streets caught on camera

“It’s surreal how different the city looks with nobody in it. Even the shape of the streets looks unfamiliar.”

York Reddit users have been sharing their photos of an empty York. Here are a few…

Walmgate, deserted on my way to work this morning. from york

York train station during lockdown from york

View post on imgur.com

View post on imgur.com

View post on imgur.com

Photograph: Richard McDougall
5 months ago

More cases of coronavirus confirmed in York and North Yorkshire

The number of people with confirmed coronavirus has risen in both York and North Yorkshire.

Official stats from Public Health England today (Friday, 27 March) show there are 17 official cases in York – three more than yesterday.

In North Yorkshire the cases have gone up by 38% – from 50 yesterday to 69 today.

Considering the relatively small number of people being tested, the real figures are likely to be significantly higher.

Here are some more of the key statistics:

  • Total UK cases: 14,543
  • Daily confirmed UK cases: 2,885
  • Total UK deaths: 759
  • Confirmed cases in York: 17
  • Confirmed cases in North Yorkshire: 69
  • Confirmed cases in East Yorkshire: 23

The NHS has 33,000 hospital beds available to treat coronavirus patients, the health service’s boss in England said this evening, as he heralded an “unprecedented response” to tackle the outbreak.

Sir Simon Stevens said that “extraordinary efforts” were being taken, as he confirmed two new field hospitals will be opened in Manchester and Birmingham to swell capacity.

Roomzzz Aparthotel offers free rooms for NHS workers
5 months ago

Roomzzz Aparthotel offers free rooms for NHS workers

The Roomzzz Aparthotel group, which has a hotel in York as well as in Chester, Leeds, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham and London, is offering free rooms for NHS workers.

It says:

  • Our aparthotels are now closed to the general public, but we want to give something back.

    Room nights are valid until 30th April 2020 for NHS staff who need to work away or self isolate.

    You must provide proof of current employment with the NHS. For more info or to book, email reservations@roomzzz.com

5 months ago

No new confirmed coronavirus cases in York – but another rise in North Yorkshire

The official stats for today (Thursday, 26 March) have been released.

This show that York has no new confirmed cases of coronavirus – which stays steady at 14.

There’s been a rise of five cases in North Yorkshire, taking the total to 50.

And there are two more official cases in East Yorkshire, with a total of 21.

As always these figures reflect the fact that very few people are being tested.

5 months ago

First pictures of police vehicle checkpoints in York

Police questioning drivers on Blossom Street. Photographs: NYP York City on Twitter
These photographs show some of the first occasions that York police have exercised their new powers.

Shared by NYP York City on Twitter, the pictures show vehicle checkpoints.

Drivers were asked to stop and account for their journeys on Blossom Street and Castle Mills Bridge, among other locations.

Drivers stopped on Castle Mills Bridge
They are some of the first random checkpoints

Earlier today North Yorkshire Police said they would begin to stop cars to check where people were going.

The measures are to enforce the lockdown and stop the spread of coronavirus.

And if you don’t comply new powers mean you could be fined, be arrested and end up in court.

The message, York police tweeted, was clear: “North Yorkshire Police stopping vehicles to ensure motorists are complying with the restrictions and only making essential journeys. #StayHomeSaveLives”

York City FC makes a statement about the completion of the season
5 months ago

York City FC makes a statement about the completion of the season

Bootham Crescent is closed and the National League North suspended.

This has led to speculation about what will happen to the current season – with York City top of the league.

This from York City today:

  • Although the club doesn’t typically comment on speculation, this is a unique situation.

    We want to clarify that we are yet to receive official information from the National League around completion of the season.

    However, we would like to take this opportunity to assure fans that the club has made a strong case regarding how the season may be brought to a close, in light of York City FC’s position in the league.

The statement said they would keep fans up to date “as and when we receive information”.

Two options under consideration include declaring the whole season null and void, which would be a nightmare. Or promotions decided on a points per game played basis.

If the latter was chosen and two clubs were promoted, York City would be one and Kings Lynn the other.

5 months ago

York Pullman Bus drivers help out by driving council refuse vehicles

Great work from York Pullman Bus Company and their team.

Three of their workers, Erwin, Nigel and Neil, have the relevant licence to drive refuse vehicles – and they are temporarily joining City of York Council’s team to keep the household waste collection service on the road.

5 months ago

Airbnb sets up a resource centre to answer people’s questions

In York as of February there were 1,479 active Airbnb listings.

So there are a lot of people wondering what to do about their property listed on the travel site.

The company has set up a dedicated web portal with advice and articles like:

  • Coronavirus and our extenuating circumstances policy
  • Answers for Superhosts about the coronavirus
  • and Why it’s smart to offer flexible cancellations right now
Sainsbury's store at Monks Cross in York. Photograph: YorkMix
5 months ago

Sainsbury’s limits the customers in its stores

This from Sainsbury’s chief executive Mike Coupe:

“Starting today, we will limit the number of people allowed in our stores and at our ATMs at any one time. We are putting queuing systems in place outside stores and will ask everyone to please queue at a safe distance of 2 metres apart.

“Since we put limits on the number of items people could buy, food and other essential items are on shelves for longer each day so please arrive throughout the day to avoid long queues forming in the morning.

“We are reducing the number of checkouts we open in supermarkets, convenience stores and petrol filling stations to help our colleagues and customers keep a safe distance from each other.


“We are also introducing safety screens at every manned checkout to help keep our colleagues safe when serving customers. We are regularly sanitising all customer areas of our stores including chip and pin machines, baskets and trolleys.

“Please pay by card at the till if you can. If you are unable to pay by card and want to pay by cash, please use our self scan tills which will stay open for cash payments.”

Photograph: NPS Public Health
5 months ago

Another rise in the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in York

The official Covid-19 figures have been updated for Wednesday (25 March) and they show another rise.

All these statistics come with the usual warning that very few people have been tested.

In York, the number of confirmed coronavirus cases has risen from 11 to 14.

And in North Yorkshire the figure has gone up from 30 to 45.

Here are some of the key figures:

  • Total UK cases: 9,529
  • Daily confirmed UK cases: 1,542
  • Total UK deaths: 422
  • Confirmed cases in York: 14
  • Confirmed cases in North Yorkshire: 45
  • Confirmed cases in East Yorkshire: 19

The figures come on the day the first death from coronavirus in the York NHS Trust was confirmed.

Meanwhile, City of York Council has launched a £1m emergency fund for businesses hit by the outbreak.

A self-isolating sign on a window in York. Photograph: Richard McDougall
5 months ago

A new case of coronavirus has been confirmed in York

The latest official figures show a new case of coronavirus has been confirmed in York tonight (Tuesday, 24 March).

That means the total number of cases in the city has reached 11.

And there’s been a sharp rise in the confirmed cases in North Yorkshire – up from 24 yesterday to 30 today.

In East Yorkshire there is no change at 16.

Here are some of the key figures:

  • Total UK cases: 8,077
  • Daily confirmed UK cases: 1,427
  • Total UK deaths: 422
  • Confirmed cases in York: 11
  • Confirmed cases in North Yorkshire: 30

It comes as North Yorkshire Police said they were prepared to use their powers to enforce the new social distancing rules.

5 months ago

Listen: York expert’s advice on preserving your mental health during the crisis

The coronavirus pandemic, the way it has disrupted normal life, and the strict rules on social distancing and isolation mean we’re all feeling added levels of stress and anxiety.

That means our mental health is coming under added strain.

Jorvik Radio has started a mental health podcast, and in the first episode, host Nick Love talks to psychotherapist Rosalie Harrison from The Retreat in York about some key issues affecting our mental health during the current coronavirus situation.

You can listen to their conversation below.

5 months ago

Support York’s Coronavirus Community Fund to help the most in need

City of York Council is urging anyone who would like to offer financial support to others affected by coronavirus to support the Coronavirus Community Fund, set up by the Two Ridings Community Foundation.

The fund has been set up to offer local charitable or community organisations emergency funding to deal with emerging issues as a result of the continuing threat of Covid-19.

Any funds received will be used to help local charitable and community organisations support the people who need it the most.

It will also work to assist people and organisations where there are no current suitable services, in order to maintain some level of viability through these uncertain times.


Love your market…
5 months ago

Shambles Market closed to all but essential fresh food traders

Make It York have today announced that the Shambles Market will be closed to all but essential fresh food traders from today (Tuesday, 24 March) until further notice.

The organisation said the change is to ensure public safety and slow the spread of Covid-19, and comes in response to updated government policy announced on Monday.

Make It York said:

  • Special provision will be made for those traders supplying fresh food, with social distancing measures put in place.

    Opening hours are set to be 10am until 5pm and any further updates will be shared on the Shambles Market Facebook and Twitter accounts.

    All measures are under continuous review, and Make It York will follow the advice given from local and national government over the coming days.

Photograph: YorkMix
5 months ago

Here’s how to donate food in York during the coronavirus outbreak

Many kindhearted businesses and individuals can donate food to those in need amid the coronavirus outbreak.

But City of York Council is urging people not to take food to the hospital directly, writes local democracy reporter Chloe Laversuch.

Instead, donations are being organised by a coordinator – so that meals and essential items can get to the vulnerable people who need them most.

A spokesperson for the council said the local authority is very grateful for all the kind offers of food from businesses and groups.

And that work is taking place to distribute items to those most in need as quickly as possible.

If you would like to get involved please email shapingneighbourhoods@york.gov.uk.

5 months ago

York’s city walls are now closed until further notice

York’s city walls are now closed until further notice, writes local democracy reporter Chloe Laversuch.

City of York Council shut the walls yesterday afternoon to help people observe social distancing measures amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Resident Dr Jonathan Fisk said he saw there were lots of people walking along the narrow city walls at the weekend, making it difficult to keep to the government’s social distancing guidance.

He said: “People could not keep a safe distance. The walls need to be closed for the duration.”

Rachael Maskell. Photograph: Screengrab
5 months ago

‘I welcome this step change’ – York MP urges everyone to #KeepHomeKeepSafe

Rachael Maskell has given her response to the lockdown announcement by the Prime Minister.

The York Central MP has called on everyone in York to join her with the message #KeepHomeKeepSafe, after the total of UK coronavirus deaths reached 335.

She said:

  • I have been calling for tight restrictions for some time, and therefore I welcome this step change.

    I know it is really tough, I am finding it tough, but we absolutely have to keep York safe. I appeal to you to stay home unless you absolutely have to go out to work in essential services only, to shop for food and medicine or to exercise alone or with the people you are living with. I want us all to come through this together.

    I thank all those who have been working in the NHS, other front line services and helping in the community. Now it is everyone’s turn to play their part in preventing the spread. We can do it in York – please #KeepHomeKeepSafe.

If you have any issues at all you can email Rachael at rachael.maskell.mp@parliament.uk. She is holding telephone surgeries on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday between 1pm and 8pm, and will call you back to talk about your situation, or deal with your email.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson addresses the nation from 10 Downing Street on Monday night. Photograph: Screengrab
5 months ago

Lockdown: Prime Minister orders people to stay at home – with police fines if you flout rules

Boris Johnson has placed the UK on lockdown to tackle the coronavirus, threatening police fines for anyone who ignores new measures including a ban on public gatherings of more than two people.

The Prime Minister detailed a short list of reasons why individuals can leave their homes as he ordered the immediate closure of all shops selling non-essentials items on Monday evening.

He ordered people to only leave the house to shop for basic necessities “as infrequently as possible” and to perform one form of exercise a day.

Or they could seek medical help, provide care to a vulnerable person or travel to work if “absolutely necessary”, he said in a televised address from within Downing Street.

“That’s all – these are the only reasons you should leave your home,” he said.

“You should not be meeting friends. If your friends ask you to meet, you should say No. You should not be meeting family members who do not live in your home.

“If you don’t follow the rules the police will have the powers to enforce them, including through fines and dispersing gatherings.”

To ensure people follow the rules, Mr Johnson ordered the immediate closure of non-essential stores including those selling electronics and clothing.


All public gatherings of more than two people – other than those you live with – will be barred, the PM said.

Other premises being shuttered are libraries, playgrounds, outdoor gyms and places of worship.

And, while parks will remain open for exercise, all social events including weddings and baptisms will be stopped. Funerals, however, can continue.

Mr Johnson said the measures will be “under constant review” and will be considered for relaxation in three weeks’ time if the evidence allows.

The cases today (Monday, 23 March)
5 months ago

No new coronavirus cases in York today – but more confirmed in North Yorkshire

There are no new cases of coronavirus confirmed in York today.

The number of people definitely infected with Covid-19 in the city has stayed at ten the latest figures reveal.

However, the number of cases in North Yorkshire has gone up – from 20 to 24.

And there’s one more case in East Yorkshire, taking the total to 16.


Here are the key stats from today (Monday, 23 March):

  • Total UK cases: 6,650
  • Daily confirmed UK cases: 967
  • Total UK deaths: 335

The figures come before Boris Johnson is set to announce new measures on tackling the coronavirus outbreak, after all Britons travelling abroad were told to return to the UK “while you still can”.

The Prime Minister will deliver an address to the nation from within No 10 at 8.30pm on Monday amid widespread calls for tougher measures to slow the spread of Covid-19.