We are now approaching the implementation of the further restrictions here in Middlesbrough and it is imperative that we all accept the measures and abide by them. They will be law and they must be adhered to.

I continue to press for a meeting with the Health Secretary and local council and public health leaders. There must be an improvement in communication between this Government and local authorities. Local councils bear all the responsibilities for the implementation and management of these measures but they are not given adequate support or powers to do so effectively. These restrictions have been imposed without due consideration or dialogue. We have no idea of what exit strategy is planned or what achievements have to be attained in order to see these restrictions lifted. It is simply not good enough.

The funding being offered to the four areas faced with these latest measures is wholly insufficient. Businesses and organisations will need millions of pounds of support and that is missing. That must be addressed as a matter of urgency if we are to see businesses in our town  survive.”

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