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Slough Enters Tier 3: Locals Blame Covid Lockdown Flouters For Cases


Angry Slough locals today railed against lockdown rule violations, not wearing face masks or keeping social distance, in order to bring the district down to Tier 3 amid rising coronavirus cases.

While other parts of Berkshire – including neighboring Windsor, where the Queen will be spending Christmas – have Tier 2 restrictions, Slough has been put on high alert over the spread of the virus.

Restaurants and pubs along Bath Road were closed while high-rise offices were in the dark and workers stayed at home when Boris Johnson's brutal post-lockdown regime went into effect this week.

The Queensmere shopping center was deserted with only essential stores open, while a huge Tesco supermarket near Slough Station was by far the busiest store. Other stores that stayed open included smaller grocery stores along the high street and department stores like The Range and B&M.

All Tier 3 stores are allowed to remain open, only pubs and restaurants are closed unless they offer takeout, while hotels in the community have also been ordered to remain closed.

Official figures show Slough had double the Covid-19 infection rate, double that of its four neighbors, at 304.3 per 100,000 for the week leading up to November 28. Despite the four-week lockdown, cases appeared to have stalled as they were only 2.2 percent down from the previous week.

Locals have attributed a higher rate of coronavirus cases – and enforcement of draconian Tier 3 measures – to rule violations refusing to wear masks that are mandatory for all indoor public spaces. They also blame a lack of social distancing, first promoted by the government in March, for the higher rate of infection.

Layla Abraham said too many people who weren't wearing masks or social distancing had in some cases resulted in a huge increase. The 24-year-old told MailOnline: “It has to be people who don't follow the rules. They are ignoring any advice to stop the spread. It makes me angry, but there is nothing we can do about it. & # 39;

Despite Tier 3 status, a barber at Two Geeza & # 39; s Barber Shop on Slough High Street was unable to wear a mask while cutting a customer's hair. His blue mask was under his chin and didn't cover his nose or face, although there was a sign at the entrance to the store warning customers that masks were mandatory.

17-year-old teenager Ibrahim Ali said he lost his job as a waiter in a restaurant – and probably won't get a job before the end of the year. In an interview with MailOnline, he explained: “That really affected me because I can't do my job and I don't know if I will get more work. All restaurants are closed. & # 39;

While other parts of Berkshire – including neighboring Windsor, where the Queen will be spending Christmas – have Tier 2 restrictions, Slough has been put on high alert over the spread of the virus

Restaurants and pubs along Bath Road were closed while high-rise offices were in the dark and workers stayed at home when Boris Johnson's brutal post-lockdown regime went into effect this week

Restaurants and pubs along Bath Road were closed while high-rise offices were in the dark and workers stayed at home when Boris Johnson's brutal post-lockdown regime went into effect this week

Shops in the center of Slough were closed as the district came under Tier 3 restrictions amid rising Covid-19 cases

Shops in the center of Slough were closed as the district came under Tier 3 restrictions amid rising Covid-19 cases

Shops in the center of Slough were closed as the district came under Tier 3 restrictions amid rising Covid-19 cases

Shops in the center of Slough were closed as the district came under Tier 3 restrictions amid rising Covid-19 cases

Yogesh Jassal said he thinks people his age, the younger generation, are not taking coronavirus seriously, telling MailOnline, “There are too many parties. People don't wear masks to keep the right distance. & # 39;

The mother of a Daeamne Butkene said she plans to continue with her usual routine and supported the government's decision to place Slough in the highest category

Yogesh Jassal (left) said he thinks people his age, the younger generation, are not taking coronavirus seriously, telling MailOnline, “There are too many parties. People don't wear masks to keep the right distance. “A mother of a Daeamne Butkene (right) said she intends to continue with her normal routine and supported the government's decision

Despite Tier 3 status, a barber at Two Geeza & # 39; s Barber Shop on Slough High Street was unable to wear a mask while cutting a customer's hair. His blue mask was under his chin and, despite a sign at the entrance, did not cover his nose or face

Despite Tier 3 status, a barber at Two Geeza & # 39; s Barber Shop on Slough High Street was unable to wear a mask while cutting a customer's hair. His blue mask was under his chin and, despite a sign at the entrance, did not cover his nose or face

Above are MSOA infection rates in Slough and the surrounding area. The purple means more than 400 cases per 100,000 people. The dark blue means over 200 per 100,000, the green means under 100 per 100,000, and the white means less than three cases in the region

Above are MSOA infection rates in Slough and the surrounding area. The purple means more than 400 cases per 100,000 people. The dark blue means over 200 per 100,000, the green means under 100 per 100,000, and the white means less than three cases in the region

Above are the Slough falls. They have gradually declined since the second lockdown was imposed in November

Above are the Slough falls. They have gradually declined since the second lockdown was imposed in November

Above is the number of coronavirus deaths in Slough per day. The number of people who succumb to the virus has not reached the same level as in the first wave

Above is the number of coronavirus deaths in Slough per day. The number of people who succumb to the virus has not reached the same level as in the first wave

The Slough borough is the only area in Berkshire that has been classified in the Tier 3 category.

Latest data from Public Health England showed that 444 people in the community tested positive for Covid-19 in the week ending November 26. In one particular area – Stoke Road and Wexham Park Road – most cases with 50 people tested positive during that period.

Health chiefs have not given an explanation as to why there has been an increase in some cases, but it is believed that many households are multi-generational – which is believed to be contributing to the spread of Covid-19.

Yogesh Jassal said he thinks people his age, the younger generation, are not taking coronavirus seriously, telling MailOnline, “There are too many parties. People don't wear masks to keep the right distance. & # 39;

The 22-year-old said he lost his job as a waiter in a restaurant in nearby Heathrow Airport Terminal 5. Thousands of locals work at the airport and many have lost their jobs due to the decline of the aviation sector.

The mother of a Daeamne Butkene said she plans to continue with her usual routine and supported the government's decision to place Slough in the highest category.

"There has to be a reason and people have to learn to follow the rules if we are to get to the top tier," she said. "I've taken every precaution that was asked."

Drivers entering Slough from the M4 motorway will be greeted by digital signs indicating that the Tier 3 area will light up on the electronic boards with the government message “Hands, Face Space”.

Diana Langmead said she hoped Slough would drop to Level 2 when the levels review later this month. & # 39; The numbers seem to be changing pretty quickly. I just hope they come down and we can get back to normal life, ”she said. "The high street seems to have been deserted, there are so many closed shops."

Hillingdon, a borough of London, has the highest rate among its neighbors at 156.1 per 100,000, a 19 percent decrease from last week. South Buckinghamshire has the second highest score at 122.1 per 100,000, followed by Spelthorne at 114.2 per 100,000 and Windsor at 107 per 100,000.

Bracknell Forest, also adjacent to Windsor, is the closest parish to see an increase in Covid-19 cases – after rising 32.9 percent to 88.9 percent per 100,000.

There are signs that the pressure on the local NHS is easing as the number of Covid-19 patients on the wards rose 33 percent from within seven days to December 1, the last date data is available 27 drops to 18.

Drivers entering Slough from the M4 motorway will be greeted by digital signs indicating that the Tier 3 area will light up on the electronic boards with the government message “Hands, Face Space”

Drivers entering Slough from the M4 motorway will be greeted by digital signs indicating that the Tier 3 area will light up on the electronic boards with the government message “Hands, Face Space”

All Tier 3 shops are allowed to stay open, only pubs and restaurants are closed unless they offer takeout, like Greggs

All Tier 3 shops are allowed to stay open, only pubs and restaurants are closed unless they offer takeout, like Greggs

Official figures show Slough had a fall rate twice that of any of its four neighbors in the week leading up to November 28

Official figures show Slough had a fall rate twice that of any of its four neighbors in the week leading up to November 28

Restaurants and pubs along Bath Road were closed and high-rise offices were in the dark

Restaurants and pubs along Bath Road were closed and high-rise offices were in the dark

The Queensmere Mall was deserted with only major stores open, while a Tesco was by far the busiest store

The Queensmere Mall was deserted with only major stores open, while a Tesco was by far the busiest store

The Slough borough is the only area in Berkshire that has been classified in the Tier 3 category

The Slough borough is the only area in Berkshire that has been classified in the Tier 3 category

Above is the infection rate for Slough (circled by a black border) compared to London and the surrounding area

Above is the infection rate for Slough (circled by a black border) compared to London and the surrounding area

Sue Foley, the public health director at Slough, told a council meeting Thursday that they were ranked Tier 3 because infections were declining more slowly compared to the environment.

"There are cases that are fantastic," she said, "but they are slower than the rest of the country." "Incidentally, most locations are down due to national lockdown, but it's just a slower rate for Slough, hence Tier 3."

She warned the city failed to fight the virus as quickly as other areas because many residents work frontline workers – including bus drivers and shop workers – increasing their risk of exposure.

And officials had put it in Tier 3 because there are large numbers of BAME people and people with underlying diseases – which increases the risk of people being hospitalized and dying if they contract the virus.

Dr. Simon Clarke, a microbiologist at the nearby University of Reading, said Slough is struggling to lower its infection rates due to higher levels of deprivation.

"Compared to the rest of Berkshire, the area has local socio-economic status," he told MailOnline. "This means that people work in factories like nurses, taxi drivers, etc., basically jobs that require face-to-face contact with fewer opportunities to work from home."

Restaurants and pubs along Bath Road were closed while high-rise offices were in the dark and workers stayed at home when Boris Johnson's brutal post-lockdown regime went into effect this week

Restaurants and pubs along Bath Road were closed while high-rise offices were in the dark and workers stayed at home when Boris Johnson's brutal post-lockdown regime went into effect this week

Slough City Councilor Mohammed Nazir told MailOnline that many families live together in the city, which increases the risk of the virus being transmitted between age groups

Slough city councilor Mohammed Nazir told MailOnline that many families live together in the city, which increases the risk of the virus being transmitted between age groups

Restaurants and pubs along Bath Road were closed and high-rise offices were in the dark

Restaurants and pubs along Bath Road were closed and high-rise offices were in the dark

While other parts of Berkshire - including neighboring Windsor, where the Queen will be spending Christmas - have Tier 2 restrictions, Slough has been put on high alert over the spread of the virus

While other parts of Berkshire – including neighboring Windsor, where the Queen will be spending Christmas – have Tier 2 restrictions, Slough has been put on high alert over the spread of the virus

Explaining why Slough is in Tier 3, he added, "There are more viruses in Slough, a higher risk population, and a larger portion of the population with underlying risk factors for hospitalization when they get it." Increased personal contact with others increases the risk of someone being exposed to and infected with the virus.

Slough City Councilor Mohammed Nazir told MailOnline that many families live together in the city, which increases the risk of the virus being transmitted between age groups.

"In some houses six or seven people live together," he said. "They all work in different areas and then come back and mingle – that could be a factor (in the spread of the virus."

He said that although the community generally followed the rules, like everywhere else, he saw groups of young people breaking the rules.

"When you walk around your area, you see three or four young guys sitting in the same car together – and you know they don't come from the same household," he said. “I've seen people playing soccer or cricket in full swing and you go over and have a word. You tell them, "You may be fit, but your grandparents or parents may not, and that's a risk you are taking for them."

He urged the residents of Slough to obey government rules in the city and just watch out for one another.

Swale in Kent remains the UK's coronavirus hotspot, having recorded 566.4 per 100,000 in the week ending November 28. Local leaders have accused residents of breaking rules, including wearing a face mask and social distancing, when urging people to take the virus seriously.

A city councilor told MailOnline that people in some areas refused to wear face masks in supermarkets, arguing that they did not believe a virus was present there.

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