Coventry’s COVID alert level to be raised to Tier 2 – high alert

The move is a response to a continuing rise in the number of cases of the virus in households and communities across the city.

Coventry’s COVID alert level is to be raised to Tier 2 – high alert – from midnight on Friday in an effort to combat rising coronavirus cases.

Coventry had originally been named in the lowest tier when the scheme was announced last week, but has now been placed in the next category – moving up from medium risk to high risk.

The move is a response to a continuing rise in the number of cases of the virus in households and communities across the city.

Under the tougher restrictions, socialising indoors with people outside your household will be banned – separate households will still be allowed to meet outdoors if adhering to the rule of six.

Pubs, bars and restaurants will remain open but must operate in a Covid-secure way and close at 10pm.

Schools, universities and places of worship will remain open.

Going on holiday outside of a high alert level area will be permitted, but must be done only with people inside the same household or support bubble.

Weddings and funerals will go ahead with a limit on the number of attendees – up to 15 for weddings and up to 30 for funerals.

The latest data shows the city’s current seven-day infection rate now stands at now 174 cases per 100,000 people, showing a consistent, upward trend over the past weeks right across the city.

George Duggins, Leader of Coventry City Council, said: “It is disappointing for all of us that we have moved up into Tier 2, but the reality is that a consistent increase in positive cases over the last few weeks made that inevitable.

“The move does bring additional restrictions and, as a city, we need to collectively set an objective to get back into Tier 1 as soon as we can.”

Although Coventry’s cases per 100,000 has risen in recent weeks, it remains lower than neighbouring Birmingham and Solihull, and lower than the West Midlands’ Combined Authority average.

Around 40% of positive cases are from the 18-21 age group and hospital admissions remain lower than the West Midlands average, along with positive cases in the 60 and over age group.

Liz Gaulton, Coventry’s Director of Public Health, echoed the view that everyone has a role to play in reducing positive rates.

She said: “This has to be a determined effort by the whole city; everyone who lives, works and studies here. 

“We would urge everyone to continue following health guidelines and look closely at the new measures that come with the Tier 2 level so we can halt the spread of coronavirus in our city.”