Leader of Lancaster City Council urges caution after government reveals 'roadmap' out of lockdown
The leader of Lancaster City Council Dr Erica Lewis said that people should continue to follow current restrictions and not allow themselves to become complacent.
Yesterday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson revealed a four step roadmap out of lockdown, with schools and colleges due to open first on March 8.
Business leaders in Lancaster have broadly welcomed the set of dates for re-opening, although teaching unions have expressed concern over a "big bang" return to the classroom.
Councillor Dr Erica Lewis, leader of Lancaster City Council, said that while the government’s roadmap suggests there is light at the end of the tunnel from Covid-19, it is only the first step on the road to recovery and we "cannot allow ourselves to become complacent".
She said: "We have all seen how quickly rates can rise when we let down our guard and our hospitals are still under huge pressure, so now is the time to redouble our efforts.
“I would urge everyone to continue to follow the current restrictions, get tested if they are feeling unwell and concerned about their health, and take up the offer of the vaccine when it’s their turn.
"Only by doing so will we see restrictions being lifted to the point that we can get back to doing all the things we love and have missed."
Government figures show that the Lancaster district still has a higher than national average rate of positive Covid-19 cases, which stood at 160.9 per 100,000 head of population on February 17.
This was up fractionally from 159.5 on February 10, but down from 224.6 on February 3.
The average for England stands at around 120 per 100,000.
Coun Lewis added: “The city council is carefully reviewing the roadmap and its implications for services that have been affected by lockdown restrictions, and announcements will be made in due course.
“We remain determined to do everything we can to support our communities from the impact of the pandemic.
"This includes fighting for additional assistance from the government, which needs to step up and provide more financial support and resources to protect residents, jobs, our economy, and those businesses which have been adversely affected.