'We cannot give up now' - leaders' plea as Essex moves into Tier 3

Colchester MP Will Quince

Colchester MP Will Quince said people should stick to the new Tier 3 restrictions to see off the coronavirus pandemic. - Credit: CONTRIBUTED

Community leaders in Essex have urged residents to stick to the rules and not take risks as much of the county goes into Tier 3.

At 00.01am on Wednesday, Basildon, Brentwood, Harlow, Epping Forest, Castle Point, Rochford, Maldon, Braintree, Chelmsford, Thurrock and Southend-on-Sea will go into Tier 3 restrictions.

Colchester, Tendring and Uttlesford will remain in Tier 2 – at least until the next review.

Will Quince, MP for Colchester, said: "It's hugely difficult for people at the moment.

"The vast majority of Essex has moved into Tier 3 and I think it's important to stress that the only reason Colchester, Tendring and Uttlesford have remained in Tier 2 is because our cases are relatively low.

"The only way we can start to see these restrictions eased is if people are cautious, they're vigilant, they reduce their contact with other people as much as is practically possible and practice 'hands, face, space'.

"It can be difficult at times but the reality is that we've still got huge pressures on the NHS.

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"People are still catching and getting very sick and dying from this awful virus.

"Just because something is within the rules doesn't mean you have to do it.

"We're hoping that, as much as possible, people are also going to use their common sense and try to limit their contact with people.

"We'll get through this together. And we could start to get back to a level of normality in 2021."

The leaders of Colchester council released a joint statement saying: "Our joint message to the people of this fantastic borough is that we need you to continue to do everything you can to keep these rates down.

Colchester Borough Council leader Mark Cory

Colchester Borough Council leader Mark Cory issued a joint statement with the leaders of the council groups. - Credit: COLCHESTER BOROUGH COUNCIL

"Everyone knows how hard this year has been, but we cannot give up now.

"The vaccines have started to be rolled out, giving some bright light at the end of a very dark tunnel. This, coupled with people following the national regulations, means that together we can tackle the virus and return to some sort of normality sooner rather than later.

"We are grateful that, together with Uttlesford and Tendring, we have remained in Tier 2 following this latest review.

"We need everyone across Colchester to continue playing their part in fighting back against this virus, to save this borough also moving into Tier 3 when they are next reviewed.

"It is only by working together that we will beat it."

Sir Bob Russell former Colchester MP

Sir Bob Russell former Colchester MP said he had lost three friends to coronavirus and asked people to follow the new restrictions "however annoying or onerous they are". - Credit: Sir Bob Russell

Sir Bob Russell, former Colchester MP, also asked people to abide by the rules.

He said: "The rules are there for a purpose and they need to be followed if Covid-19 is to be beaten. I've lost three friends to Covid-19.

"People need to be sensible at all times. Don't take risks and follow the restrictions – however annoying or onerous they are."

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