The Mayor of the West Midlands, Andy Street, has spoken out against Tier 3 local restrictions being imposed on Coventry from 2 December.
Downing Street announced last Thursday that Coventry, inline with its regional neighbours, would face new Tier 3 restrictions when the month-long November lockdown comes to an end.
The news was immediately met with much criticism as Coventry had a consistent negative trend in case numbers, deaths and hospitalisations, with the rate per 100,000 of the resident population down to 187.9.
According to the Government’s own Coronavirus Situation Report, dated 26 November, Coventry appeared to be the city with the lowest number of cases in all of Tier 3.
Since then, the Conservative Metro Mayor has commented on the imposition of heightened restrictions on Coventry by criticising quotes in The Times that at a government meeting of eight ministers it had been said that the COVID-situation in Solihull and Coventry is “really bad”.
Street went on to explained how the area had “improved markedly” and “should not have been placed into T3”.
The Mayor said that Coventry should be “eyeing December 16 with great hope and confidence” – the day when restrictions will be reassessed for local areas.
Minister Robert Jenrick last week said that there was “every reason” to believe some areas could see a de-escalation of restrictions on the date, though he did not specify which areas, if any, were under consideration.
Coventry City Council’s Labour leader, Councillor George Duggins, has too spoken out, expressing his “frustration and bitter disappointment” at the imposition of heightened restrictions on the city.
He explained that the city council had been lobbying for what it believes would have been a “fairer placement” in Tier 2, as “all the evidence points to Coventry being placed in a lower category.”
The opposition Coventry Conservative Group have also voiced their concern that Tier 3 is “tough to justify”, adding that Coventry has been “lumped in with Birmingham needlessly.”