BREAKING NEWS: Prime Minister tells pubs, clubs, restaurants and leisure centres to shut
By James Young and Andrew Merrell | 20th March 2020
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has ordered all pubs, clubs, restaurants and leisure centres to close as the government further tightens restrictions as a result of the coronavirus threat.
In his now customary daily press conference Mr Johnson said it was with regret that he made the announcement, but said it was simply necessary to save lives in the longer term.
The only exception to the statement, he added, was those pubs, clubs or restaurants which were going to be used to prepare food for distribution - and they would be allowed to remain open only for that purpose.
"Yesterday I set out the ambition to turn the tide within three months.," said Mr Johnson.
"We are going to defeat this disease with a huge national effort to reduce the spread with a reduce in social contact.
"I know it's been tough and inconvenient, but these actions were all taking together are helping to take the strain off our NHS.
"Bit by bit we are putting this country in a better and stronger position whereby we will save thousands of lives.
"As we take these actions together we can see the impact on the economy, on fantastic British companies already under strain, through no fault of their own.
"We will do everything in our power to help. We will be supporting you directly in a way government has never done before.
"These steps we are taking are intended to be temporary and I am confident, given time, the UK economy will bounce back. The speed of that is based on our ability to get on top of it now.
"We are strengthening the measures we announced on Monday, we need to push down further on that curve of transmission.
"Following agreement we are collectively telling, telling cafes, bars and restaurants to close tonight as soon as they reasonably can and not to open tomorrow - they can continue to offer takeout service.
"We are also asking leisure centres, nightclub to close.
"Physically, at least we need to keep apart. We will review the situation each month to see if we can relax the situation.
"You can still be a carrier and pass on to others, we want you to stay at home, that's how we can protect our NHS and save lives.
"This seems to go against the freedom-loving instincts of the British people, we will get through this. We will get through it together and we will beat the virus,
"The more effectively we follow the advice, the faster we will make a medical and economic fightback in full."Create your own user feedback survey
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