Yet more UK towns placed under local lockdowns as Covid cases continue to spike

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Bridgend, Merthyr Tydfil, Newport and Blaenau Gwent will be placed under a local lockdown from 6pm on Tuesday following an increase in coronavirus cases the Welsh Government has announced.

People will not be allowed to enter or leave these areas without a reasonable excuse, such as travel for work or education, and people will only be able to meet others they don't live with outdoors for the time being.

Speaking at Monday's Welsh Government press briefing, Health Minister Vaughan Gething said: "In Newport, the rise in cases appeared to start with a house party at the end of August and was subsequently linked to a number of pubs.

"But we are now seeing a wide spread of cases across the city, which are not linked to a particular cluster or showing links with existing cases."

The area currently has a rate of 45 infections for every 100,000 people, according to the latest data from Public Health Wales.

It's not known yet how long the lockdowns will be in place but ahead of the Caerphilly lockdown coming into effect Welsh Government health minister Vaughan Gething said that the new restrictions would last until October "at the very least".

It is understood these new restrictions will be formally reviewed in two weeks time.

Mr Gething said many of the coronavirus cases had been linked to people socialising indoors without physical distancing.

"We are seeing evidence of coronavirus spreading," he told a press conference in Cardiff.

"We need to take action to control and, ultimately, reduce its spread and protect people's health.

"It's always a difficult decision to introduce restrictions but coronavirus has not gone away – it is still circulating in communities across Wales and, as we are seeing in parts of South Wales, small clusters can quickly cause real issues in local communities."

The Welsh Government will call an urgent meeting of all local authority, health board and police forces from Bridgend to the English border on Tuesday.

This will discuss "the wider situation in south Wales and whether further measures are needed across the region", the government said.

  • Lockdown
  • Coronavirus

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