FOUR MPs, Caroline Ansell (Eastbourne), Nus Ghani (Wealden), Sally Ann Hart (Hastings and Rye) and Huw Merriman (Bexhill and Battle) have reacted to the announcement that East Sussex will be placed in tier 2.

They say: “We share the disappointment of residents who now face some additional restrictions to those which were in place before the November lockdown began.

It was hoped that the month of national restrictions would have eased the rates locally. Whilst, very recently, the county had the lowest rate of all 149 authorities, there was an increase in the rate a week ago.

The local rates, and local hospital Covid-19 patient occupancy, have fallen over the last few days. However, and along with the majority of England, East Sussex falls within Tier 2.

Residents should be assured that we remain an area with one of the lowest number of confirmed cases (being 145th out of 149 counties).

These additional restrictions will be particularly impactful on our hospitality industry. It is hoped that residents will find ways to support all local businesses whilst keeping to the rules and helping keep everyone safe and improving our chances of moving to the lowest tier of restrictions.

Along with our neighbour, Maria Caulfield MP, we have engaged with our County hospital, council, public health and GP leaders. We are all grateful to them for explaining the local Covid data and trends.

We have sought to ensure that those making these decisions centrally have held the same discussions. We will continue to press the Department of Health to listen to our local experts in order to review the restrictions in a fortnight with the aim of reducing to the Tier 1 level when local evidence permits

These new restrictions will be subject to a vote in the House of Commons on Tuesday December 1.”