Anglia Late Edition - December 2021

  • Watch the latest Anglia Late Edition - the regional politics programme covering issues affecting the East of England presented by Political Correspondent Phil HornbyThis programme was transmitted in the ITV Anglia region on Thursday 9 December 2021

Additional restrictions are being introduced across England to curb the rise in coronavirus cases and the spread of the Omicron variant.

The measures were announced as an investigation was launched to whether or not Christmas parties took place in Downing Street and other government buildings in November and December 2020 when the country was in lockdown.

The new restrictions include wearing face coverings in most public places apart from hospitality venues, working from home advice and the need for Covid passports for some large gatherings.

Three alleged Covid-rule-breaking parties attended by people in government will be the subject of an official investigation, it was confirmed in the House of Commons by Northampton North MP and Paymaster General Michael Ellis.

Boris Johnson is under significant pressure over claims of law breaking in government after ITV News revealed a video showing former press secretary Allegra Stratton laughing with No 10 staff about an alleged party in Downing Street on December 18 last year.

Two other gatherings will also be investigated, one reportedly attended by the PM in 10 Downing Street on 27 November and another at the Department for Education on 10 December.

Additional coronavirus restrictions were announced at a Downing Street press conference on Wednesday Credit: PA

Anglia Late Edition also discussed a new bill that the West Suffolk MP and former Health Secretary Matt Hancock is attempting to make law to improve the screen for dyslexia in schools.

Mr Hancock recounted his personal experience with the condition was diagnosed only when he reached university.

Mr Hancock told the House of Commons: "It is a quiet scandal that an estimated four in five dyslexic children—80% of them—leave school with their dyslexia unidentified.

"That means that young adults are going to university and into the workplace with the same wrong mindset that I had—that they just find reading and writing difficult—so their potential is unrealised and often their confidence is undermined." 

Phil Hornby was joined on Anglia Late Edition by Cllr Lucy Nethsingha, Peter Aldous MP and Baroness Angela Smith Credit: ITV Anglia

ITV News Political Correspondent Phil Hornby was joined on the programme by three politicians to debate the issues affecting the East of England:

  • Baroness Angela Smith is the Labour leader in the House of Lords and was the Basildon MP from 1997 until 2010

  • Peter Aldous was elected the Conservative MP for Waveney in Suffolk in 2010

  • Lucy Nethsingha is the Liberal Democrat leader of Cambridgeshire County Council