MPs vote through new tier coronavirus measures

Boris Johnson in House of Commons

Prime minister Boris Johnson in the House of Commons before the vote. - Credit: Jessica Taylor, House of Commons

Norfolk begins the day in Covid Tier 2 after the government headed off a minor revolt to see through its updated Covid restrictions.

MPs voted in the House of Commons on Tuesday evening on whether to approve the new tier system of Covid-19 restrictions in England, with a number of Conservative MPs voting against the motion.

The new system, which divides England into three tiers based on rates of infection, came into force as national lockdown measures ended.

The motion was won by 291 votes to 78.

A Government spokesman said ministers welcomed the support for the winter plan and would work with those who expressed concerns.

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Some of Norfolk's MPs spoke out ahead of the vote.

North Norfolk MP Duncan Baker, who has previously spoken out over his disappointment at Norfolk being placed in Tier 2, argued that keeping everyone as safe as possible was his primary aim, and for that reason, he would support the vote.

Jerome Mayhew, Conservative MP for Broadland, said he believed the promise of vaccines as "s a bright light at the end of a shortening tunnel" and a tiered approached had to balance the risks.

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He said: "This balance is not easy, and it is certainly not the most popular thing to do, but it is what the government must do.

"Once the vaccination programme begins, we can look forward to a much more normal 2021: in the short-term we have to continue showing patience, caution, and follow the sensible precautions of 'Hands, Face, Space' for a little longer."

Norfolk's infection rate in the seven days to November 27 was 93.7 cases per 100,000 people.

Tier 2 means the counties are rated as being on high alert - areas with a "higher or rapidly rising level of infections".

While shops will reopen, households will not be able to mix indoors and pubs will only be able to open if operating as restaurants, with alcohol only served as part of a "substantial meal".

The way that Norfolk's MPs voted will be released shortly.

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