PRIME Minister Boris Johnson has put the UK into an effective lockdown for three weeks from tonight.
In an address broadcast on BBC One, Johnson warned the British public: ‘You must stay at home.’
A number of the most stringent measures ever imposed will be brought into force from midnight. These measures will apply in Northern Ireland.
All shops selling non-essential goods will be closed; public places such as libraries, playgrounds and outdoor gyms, and places of worship will shut; all public gatherings of more than two people will be dispersed; weddings, baptisms and ceremonies will be stopped, although funerals will be allowed.
People will only be allowed to leave their homes to: shop for basic goods; for a medical need; to travel to work where it is not possible to do so from home; and for one form of exercise per day
“The critical thing we must do is stop the disease spreading between households,” Johnson said.
“These are the only reasons you should leave your home.
“You should not be meeting friends. If your friends ask you to meet, you should say no.
“You should not be meeting family members who do not live in your home. You should not be going shopping except for essentials like food and medicine — and you should do this as little as you can.”
Police will have the power to enforce these measures, which mark a huge u-turn from the PM.
He said: “No prime minister wants to enact measures like this
“I know the damage that this disruption is doing and will do to people’s lives, to their businesses and to their jobs. And that’s why we have produced a huge and unprecedented programme of support both for workers and for business.”