Pubs at the heart of our communities and our way of life are facing ruin

FACED with a backbench revolt against the Government’s draconian Tier system, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab yesterday warned of a possible third national lockdown if we don’t “get the balance right”.

Well, there are huge swathes of the country where people would hardly notice, since they will this week move from Lockdown 2 into tiers that are virtually lockdown by another name.

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As we reveal today, just a tiny fraction of the 37,000 pubs in England will be able to open as usual.

Even if some regions are shifted from Tier 3 to Tier 2 after the first review on December 16, it will be too late for the vital Christmas season.

The hospitality industry, and the pubs at the heart of our communities and our way of life, face ruin with many thousands of jobs lost.

We don’t envy Boris Johnson the choices he has but, given the terrible damage the restrictions do, he must look to reduce them as soon as possible, especially in areas with low infection rates which have been unfairly lumped into Tier 2.

And he must give MPs the opportunity to vote again on the restrictions early in the New Year, not wait two months.

That is getting the balance right.

Give ’em a call

THERE was an epidemic affecting this country long before Covid-19 — an epidemic of loneliness.

It often hits the old and the vulnerable hardest, but loneliness can affect anyone, and 20 million of us have felt it.

Covid-19 has made it worse, with so many people having to isolate.

And now we are approaching the hardest time of the year for those who suffer the pain of being alone.

Knowing the happiness of others at Christmas, as they plan time with loved ones or buy them presents, can simply emphasise their own loneliness.

That is why The Sun is launching its Christmas Together campaign.

It need not cost you any money, but a phone call and a chat with someone who needs it could mean the world.

So give the gift of your company this festive season.

No surrenders

A TRADE deal with the EU could be done by the end of this week, an upbeat Mr Raab said yesterday.

How many times have we heard that, only for the EU to carry on insisting the UK should still dance to its tune?

An agreement may be close but so is the end of the transition period and we need to prepare ourselves for the possibility there may not be a deal if the EU fails to be realistic.

No Deal would be bad news for both sides, but we would survive it, and probably better than the EU. Surrendering our sovereignty is not an option.

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