Council requests extra powers of enforcement as residents urged to 'only go out where necessary'

Whilst Cheshire East is not currently in lockdown, the Leader of Cheshire East Council has urged residents to behave as though they were and "only go out where really necessary" and suggests that the elderly and obese should only go outside to exercise.

As of today, Monday 29th September, there have been 2852 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Cheshire East, including 156 cases within the last week, which is an increase of 29 from yesterday.

Speaking on Twitter, Councillor Sam Corcoran, described the numbers as "alarming".

He said "I believe that further restrictions are needed and from today it's mandatory to self-isolate if you're asked to do so and there's a £1000 fine for failing to do so.

Cllr Corcoran added "I believe that additional restrictions will be needed. If you're in a high risk group and I urge people to only go out where necessary. If you're in a high risk group, for example elderly or obese I suggest that you only go out to exercise.

"We are not lockdown in Cheshire East but please think back to when we were in lockdown, work from home wherever possible and only go out where really necessary, for example to go to school or if your work requires it."

Speaking against the latest figures, Cllr Craig Browne, Deputy Leader at Cheshire East Council, said "It is against this backdrop that the Leader and I have written to the Secretary of State requesting additional local powers of enforcement to try and control the spread of the corona virus across Cheshire East. A number of our neighbours have gone back into local lockdown, including most recently, Stockport. This is something that, for the sake of our economy, we are keen to avoid.

"We have also expressed our concern about the lack of testing capacity. So far, the North West as a whole has seen 24% of the infections across England, but has only 15% of the national testing capacity. Fortunately, from this Thursday, 1st October, Cheshire East will be getting a local testing centre at Chester Street Car Park, in Crewe, with plans for further sites in Congleton and Macclesfield."

Cllr Browne added "This week has seen the introduction of the NHS test and trace app which I would like to encourage everyone to download and use. Businesses where people congregate, for example pubs, restaurants and leisure facilities have been asked to display a venue specific QR code, which people can scan on their phone to record their visit – remember for some venues, this is a legal requirement."



Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Craig Browne
Monday 28th September 2020 at 10:38 pm
Hi Tony,

Thank you for your question; I hope you are also keeping well.

You will be aware of course that the government has recently taken the difficult decision to place a number of local authority areas across the northwest of England under local lock down, some of which (perhaps most notably, Stockport) directly border Cheshire East. As you have noted, this is likely to have a devastating impact on jobs, salaries and livelihoods (incidentally, I have also run my own business since 2004 and therefore have not been unaffected by the restrictions introduced to date); for these reasons, we are keen to do all we can to avoid the government placing Cheshire East under a similar lock down.

In arriving at the decision to place these neighbouring authority areas under local lockdown, the government will have taken into account (amongst other factors) the number of Covid-19 infections per 100,000 population, as well as the rate of increase in each area. We understand that Cheshire East is not currently on the government's watch list, with 46 cases per 100,000 population compared to, for example, Stockport's 89 cases per 100,000 population; however, whereas at the beginning of July Cheshire East had a weekly average of just 20 cases, within the last seven days we have seen 178 new cases.

Should the borough continue on its current trajectory with respect to the number of new cases, it is very likely that Cheshire East will be placed on the government's watch list and that similar local restrictions to those already seen in parts of Greater Manchester, Lancashire & Merseyside will follow. As Deputy Leader of the Council, I shoulder a great responsibility to do all that I can to try and avoid this, which is why (along with the Leader) I have written to the Secretary of State requesting additional enforcement powers; however, I would like to reassure you that these powers relate specifically to the hospitality sector and the ability to temporarily close establishments not complying with national legislation.

I hope this both answers your question and helps to provide some reassurance.

Kind regards,
Alan Brough
Tuesday 29th September 2020 at 8:29 am
It would be helpful if we could see the question from "Tony" that Craig is responding to.
Tony Haluradivth
Tuesday 29th September 2020 at 9:07 am
Thanks Craig...12 new pages of enforcement rules rushed through yesterday, with not votes allowed. This is NOT democracy . One good person challenging these buffoons in power....Sir Desmond Dwayne. Why is your Labour colleague not asking his leader to call the Government to account? These ARE CASES OF COVID CRAIG, not hospital cases. Increased testing will find increased cases. This is now a Casedemic. I hope we do not see our Councils of Cheshire East and West locking students into Halls of residence guarded by Serco prison officers.
Buried in the new draconian rules is a really choice "nugget" if any citizen refuses to take a Covid 19 test.. the Health authorities can call on the Police to assist them in getting the "refusnik"to the test centre. Sounds awfully like a different regime in different times.
New stats for you in the Winter flu outbreak of 1975 ..58000 died of flu (I.e complications caused by the flu). No lockdown then, no panic, no hysteria and our UK population was considerably smaller. I appreciate your hands are tied Craig , the hysteria , fearmongering and deliberately terrifying and threatening citizens must stop. As I said to another commenter on hear a sense of perspective is now needed.
Toodle Pips just off to get my newspaper in our wonderful village ;)
Andy Brown
Tuesday 29th September 2020 at 1:03 pm
Additional powers that have had zero scrutiny in parliament.

Thanks but no thanks Craig.
Bill Pilkington
Tuesday 29th September 2020 at 5:22 pm
Hello Craig,
Which genius decided that the new NHS app is only available to those with a new smart phone?
Numerous people will therefore be excluded from accessing the new app.
Bill Pilkington
Luke Gilfedder
Tuesday 29th September 2020 at 5:58 pm
'The last time we had a wasps nest, the government came and burnt our house down. We have now found a second wasp nest, we better take extreme precautions to get rid of it, or they will come and burn our house down again'.

The sensible thing would be to stop and question, seriously, the proportion of a proposed action, before lending this sort of legitimacy to it.
David Hadfield
Tuesday 29th September 2020 at 9:27 pm
Hi Tony Haluradivth,
You write so much sense with you latest posting above.
Yes, 58,000 died in the UK with Flu during the 1975 epidemic ..... but yet businesses and everything else remained open and continued to function at that time.

Yet today, with 200,000 Covid tests each day on average, we find 4,000 or 5,000 being Positive ...... and then we are informed by the biased media that 15 or 20 deaths have occurred that day.
Even those figures are suspect as many "Positives" are false readings, similar to Prostate tests having Positive Negatives ?

Don't get me wrong, it must be totally devastating for friends and family when a loved one dies, but we need to have some sense of proportion here.

We hear very little about the 450 deaths, on average, EVERY SINGLE DAY from Cancer in this country, and we hear very little about all the other deaths that happen EVERY SINGLE DAY here in the UK, so why is this government prepared to decimate so many businesses and companies instead of carrying on with life as we
have known it.

It beggars belief that Universities are using security guards to keep students in their rooms against their will, under house arrest. Surely that is illegal imprisonment ?

This Covid virus is a killer, but so are Flu and Pneumonia viruses, so let's use some common sense instead of these draconian measures dictated by this government.

The scientific statements given by the media are so scaremongering and are out of all proportion ...... for example, if the boffins say 500,000 will be tested positive for the Chinese Virus (to quote Trump) by Christmas ..... but then a much smaller percentage do actually become positive, the boffins will say it was due to their restrictions, and if it does become 500,000, the boffins will say "Hey, we told you so"

BTW, I'm not a Covid disbeliever, but we need some sort of reality check here !!
Natalie Husdan
Tuesday 29th September 2020 at 9:58 pm
Reading this having just spent an ace evening enjoying Wilmslow’s independent cinema, (finally open after almost half a year’s closure), and an independent restaurant on Water Lane, who are continuing the ‘eat out to help out’ scheme off their own back as they need to stimulate business. Both businesses, like most in Cheshire East, have spent serious money and effort to become ‘Covid secure’ as per the Govt’s and Cheshire East’s guidelines. I’d be intrigued to know if Cheshire East Council have consulted with local businesses over this bizarre encouragement to now ‘only go out if necessary’? This is just as backward and local resident harming as Cheshire East’s decision to close the car parks at The Carrs and The Edge to discourage those unable to walk there from enjoying those areas - despite there being no reasoning for this in the emergency Covid legislation. Disgraceful and sadly doesn’t surprise me at all.
David Hadfield
Saturday 3rd October 2020 at 7:02 am
To add a little clarity into these new intrusive restrictions being demanded by Cheshire East Council, when the Chinese Virus first reared its ugly head in the early days, there were about 16,000 tests per day and this resulted in approx. 6,000 testing Positive ...... this was extremely worrying.
Now, six months later, something like 200,000 tests are being carried out per day, still showing approx. 6,000 Positives, so these facts alone shows how the pandemic has been contained even though the UK are testing many thousands more than the early days.
(Thanks President Trump for calling it by its true name = the CHINESE Virus)
Jon Williams
Saturday 3rd October 2020 at 9:10 am
There have been more than 450,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus so far in the UK and more than 40,000 people have died.
Kathryn Blackburn
Saturday 3rd October 2020 at 12:01 pm
450,000 out of 67 million. And out of the 40,000 we do not know with respect how many were actually caused by Covid 19.
Stephen Justice
Sunday 4th October 2020 at 1:02 am
Covid-19 is not the flu or a cancer.

It is a highly contagious virus that has not just killed the elderly and frail.

The only reason it has not run catastrophically out of control is due to a large number of people who have and continue to behave cautiously.

It is for that reason that “only” the 42,000 deaths another commenter noted have occurred, - thats 42,000 out of 65,000 excess deaths over the same period on average.

That’s 42,000 more deaths than the typical 500,000 each year.

The wrongly named Spanish Flu killed 200,000 at a time when the UK population was some 40 million.

Applying similar ignorance today perhaps Covid-19 could kill more like 300,000.

Thankfully things are better in 2020 and behaviour is largely more appropriate.

So to those who demand a sense of perspective I suggest it is they who lack that perspective.

And as for calling it the Chinese virus what does this gain other than to provoke further xenophobic prejudice?

None of the agressive bluster will bring this coronavirus under control.

It requires intelligent and circumspect behaviour - sure, the often quoted Blitz Spirit is needed, but that involved much positive community thinking and a good deal more good sense in seeking protection from danger.
Kathryn Blackburn
Sunday 4th October 2020 at 9:45 am
The economy tanking puts far more people in 'danger' than the virus does.
David Hadfield
Sunday 4th October 2020 at 12:09 pm
In this country an average 450 people die EVERY SINGLE DAY from Cancer.
The Lockdowns have made sure many many thousands are not allowed their medical examinations or treatment each day, so these poor sods are just waiting to be seen by doctors and specialists, perhaps too late in many cases.
It will certainly be a lot more than the 450 Cancer deaths per day as this continues.

As for businesses, companies, employees and employers, many will not have jobs to go back to as these Lockdowns have totally decimated most workplaces.
Kareem Masdoon
Sunday 4th October 2020 at 3:29 pm
Yes whilst it is a dangerous virus, a sense of proportion is still required you are plucking figures out of mid air Mr Justice which damages any rational debate. You cannot say for sure what the extra deaths may have been, in the same way that Professor Ferguson with all his scaled up models could not.. When the last lockdown was initiated we were reaching the peak of that first wave. Sars Cov2 DID originate in China and many serious minded Scientists are starting to believe the theory that the virus may have accidentally escaped from the bio sciences lab in Wuhan which was certainly the epicentre of the outbreak. It is not racist to refer to it as a Chinese virus. The CCP (not known for their probity ) allowed the virus to escape their borders at the start of the year by allowing millions to move freely at the time of their New Year, they acted appallingly and it does sicken me sometimes to see news reports about China successfully handling the pandemic. (By China I obviously mean the country and the CCP and not individual Chinese).
Tony Haluradivth
Monday 5th October 2020 at 12:21 pm
Well said David Hadfield and others. I have enjoyed a long weekend in deepest Wiltshire away from the fray. (Just a party of 4 and 1 canine) working tv or WiFi so it was bliss and a welcoming pub after soggy walks with a real fire. Of course we discussed the chaos and fearmongering as we were with my wife's ex colleagues (All lawyers). One told us of a class action being launched in Germany at the moment. (See links). If it succeeds those who are in power both local and national should be very careful indeed and should be very wary of issuing any hasty ill thought out decrees re: this current pandemic....