In a move that many people would like to see on this side of the Irish Sea, The Republic of Ireland has announced that the whole country will enter what they call a Tier 5 lockdown from Wednesday of this week.
Despite the country having recorded no new COVID-19 related deaths within the last 24 hours, the rising prevalence of positive cases of the virus has caused the Government to act quickly, as they try to get a grip on things before they get out of hand again.
The restrictions will last for six weeks, right up until the start of December, leaving many businesses and communities worried about whether they’ll even make it through the winter.
Whilst schools and colleges will remain open, to ensure that Irish children don’t miss out on even more education than they already have, all non essential shops will be forced to close, public gatherings will be banned and there will be strict limitations on movement.
The measures which limit household interaction may seem drastic, but they are perhaps an indication of the type of lockdown we may be about to see in the UK, particularly in Greater Manchester. Central Government are currently locked in talks with Greater Manchester over when and how to move the region into the UK’s highest tier of alert, Tier 3, but the talks have stagnated and soured again and again.
In Ireland, there have been reassurances that more money will be made available for those who have been affected by these latest measures and the looming Tier 5 lockdown.
How long this will all go on for, is the million dollar question right now, and it is sobering to look around the world to see how other nations, like New Zealand, are now emerging into normality, whilst we seem to be right back at the bottom of a very big mountain.
In March, the UK acted after Ireland acted. Will we see the same pattern seven months on?