Conservative MP Ian Liddell-Grainger has appealed to his constituents to stick to the rules as a four-week lockdown looms.
He said rigid adherence to the Government’s new restrictions offered the only hope of families being able to enjoy limited gatherings at Christmas and, more importantly, of preventing the NHS from being overwhelmed.
Mr Liddell-Grainger, MP for Bridgwater and West Somerset, said the new measures, due to be put to a Commons vote on Wednesday, would be regarded as onerous by many people, even though with schools and colleges remaining open they would not be as extensive as during the spring lockdown. “The other difference, of course, is that this is a fixed-term imposition as it’s designed to last for just four weeks,” he said. “ Whether that turns out to be the case naturally depends on everyone obeying the rules that the Government’s scientific advisors deem necessary. If the rules are widely flouted it will merely undermine the huge national effort everyone is being asked to make.”
Mr Liddell-Grainger said that, so far, Somerset and the wider Southwest had been one of the parts of the country least affected by the virus and understandably some people might feel the risks continue to be low enough to bend the rules.
“They shouldn’t delude themselves. Cases and deaths are rising and we have to be as vigilant here as anywhere else if we are to minimise the spread of the virus. The challenges won’t be the same as during the previous lockdown. The food supply chain is well geared up to ensure there won’t be any shortage of essentials so there is absolutely no need to panic-buy”
“What we are looking at essentially are four weeks of inconvenience, of not being able to live our lives according to the usual patterns.
I would argue that that is a very small price to pay for keeping the NHS functioning and for helping the Government in its efforts to measurably slow the spread of this devastating virus”.
The MP said he was appealing to his constituents – in the countryside as well as in towns to keep themselves safe, keep their families safe and to follow Government advice to the letter.