Stratford-on-Avon District Council challenge tier 3 restrictions decision

Councillors say the decision to place the town in Tier 3 appears to be "arbitrary and irrational". Credit: ITV News Central

Stratford-on-Avon District Council is challenging the Government's decision to put the town into Tier 3 restrictions.

Councillors have sent a Judicial Review pre-action letter to the Health Secretary.

Tony Jefferson, Leader of Stratford-on-Avon District Council, said it wasn't an action that the council took lightly but they feel that the latest data for the area doesn't warrant the tough restrictions.

Cllr Jefferson says that there's a "feeling of disbelief and anger locally at Stratford District being in Tier 3."

He says that hospitality businesses were especially devastated by the news.

  • What do the rates look like in Stratford-on-Avon?

Based on the information that Government used in relation to the tiering decision, Stratford-on-Avon District Council had a 7 day rate/100,000 of 118.4.

The number of cases over 7 days/100,000 from 20-26 November was 83 and as at 30 November was 73.Of the 30 local authorities in the West Midlands, only Malvern Hills had a lower rate than Stratford District. 

The 7 days case rates/100,000 for the other areas in the same Tier 3 cluster as Stratford District are:

  • Nuneaton and Bedworth : 337.2

  • North Warwickshire :  311

  • Solihull : 269.4

  • Rugby : 264

  • Coventry : 218

  • Warwick : 209.4

The Council says the most significant problem in this group relates to Nuneaton and Bedworth and North Warwickshire. Neither of the areas share a border with Stratford District, and travel to work information shows that there is no link from the south to the north of the County or vice versa.However, Stratford District does share a border with Redditch Borough Council which has been placed in Tier 2.  Redditch Borough had a 7 day case rate/100,000 of 297.9, almost 3 times the rate for Stratford District.

The Government says a number of factors were taken into consideration when deciding on the restrictions, including pressures on local NHS groups, and they will be reviewed on the 16 December.

But Cllr Jefferson says that's little consolation for businesses in the town: "The prospect of a review as late as 16 December is no consolation.

"Most hospitality businesses will not now open before Christmas. The consequences for business survival and unemployment could be significant."

The District Council has requested for Matt Hancock to retract the decision to put the town into Tier 3, and instead into Tier 1 or 2.

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