Welsh Government has confirmed that new interventions will be introduced across Bridgend County Borough from 6pm on Tuesday 22 September to help prevent increasing coronavirus cases from spreading further.
The announcement follows a sharp rise in positive cases within the county borough – up from 17 per cent to 37.4 per cent in less than a week – without any obvious cluster sources that might explain why this is happening.
Similar interventions are already in place at Caerphilly and Rhondda Cynon Taf, and have also been confirmed for Merthyr Tydfil, Blaenau Gwent and Newport.
While the requirements will be regularly reviewed, extended households will no longer be able to form, and that residents will not be able to leave or remain away from the area without a reasonable excuse.
Residents will need to work from home wherever possible, while people from outside of the county borough will not be able to enter without a reasonable excuse. While pubs and other licensed premises will need to remain closed between 11pm-6am, businesses and schools will remain open with appropriate precautions in place.
With indoor and outdoor visits to care homes already temporarily suspended, the council is pre-empting a further change in official guidance on the use of masks and face coverings by making them mandatory on secondary school transport.
The Leader, Cllr Huw David, said: “Following a sharp, continuous rise in confirmed cases, further interventions are unfortunately now necessary to help control the spread of the coronavirus in Bridgend County Borough.
“The council and its partners have repeatedly called for the community to come together by following a basic set of rules, but it is clear that tougher actions are now required which, while not constituting a full lockdown, are designed to limit the spread of the virus.
“We need the help of everyone in Bridgend County Borough to follow the rules on wearing masks, washing hands, using sanitiser and keeping socially distant in order to stop the virus from spreading further.
“It is also more important than ever for people to avoid travelling to Porthcawl and gathering in large numbers this weekend as the annual Elvis Festival has been cancelled.
“These rules are in place to protect you, your family and your friends. They will be enforced by the council, the Shared Regulatory Service and South Wales Police, and will be regularly reviewed, but ultimately, their success relies on how residents choose to behave in coming days and weeks.
“We will of course do everything we can to return to normal as soon as it is safe to do so, but we should also all be very clear that if the increase in positive cases does not begin to fall, further actions will have to be considered in order to protect the residents of Bridgend County Borough.”
- Welsh Government is making a series of Frequently Asked Questions available – you can view these by visiting the coronavirus page at the Wales website