The Isle of Wight remains in Tier One, after the government's latest review of the Covid-19 tiers.

  • Can I go to Portsmouth (Tier Three) for Christmas shopping? Scroll down for the latest information and statements from cross-Solent providers...
  • Scroll down for advice on what to do over Christmas...

What has the MP said?

Reacting to today's Tier announcement, Bob Seely MP said: “It's right that the Isle of Wight has retained its Tier One status and I thank Ministers for continuing to listen.

"This is good news for residents who can continue to benefit from more relaxed rules, but it is also good for our local businesses who can continue to trade under lighter restrictions. With the first of the Covid-19 vaccinations now being administered to Islanders, I hope that we are now at the beginning of the end in defeating the virus - which is the best Christmas present we could ask for. 

Isle of Wight County Press:

Mr Seely added: “I will be talking to the police and the Council about the situation now that neighbouring areas on the mainland are in Tier Three. I would also urge residents living in areas near us, including Portsmouth, Gosport and Havant please not to visit the Island until restrictions in these areas change, unless it is for essential reasons.

“I am very well aware of how responsible Island businesses have been in ensuring that they can serve their customers safety. We will welcome back visitors from Tier Three areas as soon as those restrictions have been lifted.

"We, on the Island, also need to be mindful when visiting Tier Two and Tier Three areas. We should not be going to areas with higher infections rates unless it is for essential reasons. We don’t want to be doing Christmas shopping and bringing COVID back to the Island, especially since one in three people who have it do not know they have it."

On Twitter, the leader of the Isle of Wight Council called it 'great news'.

Isle of Wight County Press:

Council leader, Dave Stewart, said: “With the roll out of vaccinations against Covid-19 starting earlier this week, today’s announcement that the Island will remain in Tier 1 is a further boost for our community.

“Together we have reduced our infection rate to one of the lowest in the country — but as we enter the festive season we must not let our guard down.

“We do not want to undo the fantastic work of our public health team in keeping our residents safe, and that is why I am asking those who visit us to follow the rules.

“Please do not travel to and from the Isle of Wight to a Tier 3 area — which now includes Portsmouth, Gosport and Havant, as well as many other areas in the South East, unless it is for work, health or other exempt reasons.

“I would urge people to take personal responsibility over the next few weeks — just because you can travel does not mean that you have to — please think about what you can do to protect yourself and others.

“Please do not travel from the Island to a Tier 3 area for Christmas shopping — there are so many local businesses and food and drink providers that we can all support this Christmas.

“Any attempt to stretch the rules could result in a further lockdown in January and bring more pressure to many businesses that are already in a fragile position as a result of the trading challenges they have already faced this year. They have worked extremely hard to maintain Covid-safe premises and I thank them for that.

“We are working in partnership with colleagues from the police to mitigate any issues caused by people travelling between tiers. That includes ferry operators and other partner agencies — this is all about informing people of the restrictions that are in place and asking them to play their part by adhering to the rules."

What happens now?

The rules and regulations will be in place until next week, when they will be temporarily relaxed for Christmas.

Some of the current restrictions include continuing to follow the rule of six.

Isle of Wight County Press: The Isle of Wight will stay in Tier One

Portsmouth, Gosport and Havant will enter tier three from Saturday, Health Secretary Matt Hancock has announced today.

That means travel is restricted and a host of other rules will be in place for the city.

What have Islanders been saying?

Earlier this week, before the new tiers were revealed, the Isle of Wight County Press asked if you thought we should stay in Tier One.

Kathryn Brock wrote, "I think we should. We have the lowest infection rate in the country."

Gary Clarke was cautious in his Facebook comment. He told us his concern was the virus spreading in schools.

Jane Howard said: "So pleased we are in Tier One, but the temptation for others now to spoil it is much higher. Expecting people to come across from the mainland just to booze in pubs."

Matt Simmonds argued there should be no restrictions at all.