Lancashire MP reveals which two areas will come out of local lockdown from today

An East Lancs MP has confirmed that two areas of the county will come out of local lockdown from today, whilst other areas face further weeks of restrictions.

By Matthew Calderbank
Friday, 21st August 2020, 12:19 pm
Updated Friday, 21st August 2020, 12:22 pm

Jake Berry, MP for Rossendale and Darwen, has confirmed that both areas of his constituency will come out of lockdown from today in a shock move that will see the borough of Blackburn with Darwen split down the middle.

In a video announcement (see video above), the Conservative MP said the decision had been confirmed to him by health secretary Matt Hancock this morning.

Jake Berry, MP for Rossendale and Darwen, said: "I've just come off the phone with Matt Hancock, the secretary of state for health.

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Blackburn will remain under strict local lockdown restrictions despite Darwen and Rossendale returning to the less severe national measures

"I've been in touch with him already a couple of times this week to find out what changes are going to be made to lockdown here in Rossendale.

"He's been able to confirm today that we are taking a much more targeted approach, and because of that huge effort all of us have made to control the virus, Rossendale and Darwen will now be coming out of the increased restrictions we have seen over the last few weeks.

"So what does that mean for you? It means that where we live here (Rossendale and Darwen) is going to be covered by the normal national restrictions."

The move will leave East Lancashire split in terms of lockdown, with Blackburn, Accrington, Burnley, Hyndburn and Pendle remaining under stricter conditions.

Jake Berry, MP for Rossendale and Darwen, has confirmed the changes in lockdown in a video message today (August 21). Pic: Jake Berry MP

Whereas people just a few miles away in Rossendale and Darwen can now socialise with other households and visit homes and private gardens, in line with national restrictions.

Mr Berry added: "I'm really sorry that other areas in East Lancashire have not been able to take this important step today. It's nothing to do with who we are or where we live. It's just to do with how the disease is moving through our society.

"So for our friends in Accrington, Blackburn, and Pendle, and other areas of East Lancashire, I want all of us to stand with them in solidarity, make sure we continue to support our friends and family because together, as one, we will beat this terrible disease."