It is “too soon” for further easing of lockdown measures in Bradford, the city’s council leader has said.
Susan Hinchcliffe’s warning comes as coronavirus infection rates in the city rose to 48 per 100,000 of population for the week ending 25 July.
Ms Hinchcliffe is in talks with the government about if the city should move forward with an easing of restrictions on 1 August.
Venues such as bowling alleys and boxing gyms are due to reopen from 1 August, while those extremely vulnerable people who have been shielding will no longer need to.
Labour leader Ms Hinchcliffe said: “To avoid a local lockdown we need to do something now so, personally, I would think that 1 August let’s just pause the easing of those restrictions and make sure we consolidate what we are doing.
“We need to make sure people realise that they need to get tested if they have symptoms, don’t shake hands etc, get all those messages really clearly in people’s minds and take it from there.
“But certainly I think 1 August is probably too soon to go to further easing of lockdown.”
Bradford is still high on is on Public Health England’s watch list of local authorities with high numbers of cases of coronavirus and the most recent figures show cases are rising.
Council leader Susan Hinchcliffe told me “it’s my job to worry,” and she is urging everyone to follow Bradford’s Covid code and stay safe.
One alternative to a city-wide lockdown is the imposition of restrictions in certain postcode areas and data on that is now being passed to the council to examine.
The council said it has taken measures to tackle the virus and has the third highest Covid-19 testing rates of authorities in Yorkshire.
Ms Hinchcliffe said: “Bradford is a key worker city, people out there have been working all through lockdown, we have densely populated urban areas, we’re a big city, 537,000 people, and all those things come together to make sure Bradford is probably more vulnerable than other places.”
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World news – GB – ‘Too soon’ for city to ease lockdown