AS a troubled 2020 comes to an end and we approach a 2021 that offers the hopes of a return to a more normal life through the ongoing roll-out of COVID vaccinations, Sefton Council chiefs are urging people to stay safe at New Year.
Margaret Jones, Sefton Council’s Director of Public Health said: “I know some people may think I sound like a constant party pooper but what I really want is for us all to be able to celebrate a return to the things we love to do in 2021.
“While we may all be glad to see the back of 2020, we need to make sure that we don’t get carried away celebrating its departure and end up doing things that could have serious consequences in the New Year.
“We all need to continue doing all we can to protect those around us by following the guidelines, remembering our distancing, mask wearing and handwashing and going for regular SMART tests if we don’t have symptoms and booking a test if we do develop symptoms”
The Government’s restrictions are not being relaxed for New Year which means households should not mix in indoor settings and the rule of six applies outdoors. Pubs and restaurants can only serve alcohol as part of a substantial meal and must close by 11pm with last orders called at 10pm.
Margaret continued: “I would like to thank everyone across Sefton for the huge efforts and sacrifices they have made throughout 2020 and the generosity they have shown supporting vulnerable members of our community.
“Personally, I hope 2021 is going to be a year in which have the chance to remind people of the things they can do again, including enjoying a really good party.”
SMART COVID-19 testing for residents and visitors from other areas who don’t have COVID-19 symptoms is taking place at Splash World in Southport, Bootle Leisure Centre and Aintree Racecourse. Sites are open from 9am to 6pm every day except New Year’s Day. No appointments necessary and results turn up in about 30 minutes. Anybody who does develop the coronavirus symptoms – a raised temperature, new persistent cough or loss of taste or smell, should self-isolate and book a test by calling 119 or visiting www.nhs.uk/coronavirus.