The Welsh Government has today announced that a 'circuit breaker' lockdown will come into force across the whole of Wales from 6pm on Friday, October 23, until the start of Monday, November 9, 2020.
Council Leader, Cllr Andrew Morgan, said: “I know this is an anxious time for residents and business owners, however public health officials have made clear that this action has been taken in light of a continuing rise and exponential growth of COVID-19 cases across the whole of Wales, with almost 1,000 cases in RCT in the last 14 days. The “circuit break” will allow the “clock to be reset” by breaking the avenues of transmission that are currently seeing an upward trajectory of cases.
"Like many other Counties, Rhondda Cynon Taf has been under increased local measures over the past few weeks and whilst this has shown success in slowing the increase of new cases - which was growing at a much faster rate - we are now at a point where even further national measures are necessary if we are to avoid the strain we saw on our NHS earlier this year and ultimately save lives.
"Clearly, many families will be starting to look towards the Christmas period and, in light of the challenges of this year, will be eager to spend time with their loved ones. We have made clear to Ministers the need to ensure that the Christmas period can be as normal as possible and, by them taking the decisive action now, they have given this the best possible chance.
"Under the “circuit break” announced today, the Council’s libraries, community centres and recycling centres will all close. Public toilets will stay open in town centres with reduced opening hours. All parks, play areas and cemeteries will also all remain open.
"We have also discussed the concerns that many business owners will have with this new Wales-wide lockdown, and I’m pleased that £300m is being made available in terms of business support. Further information will be released shortly by the Welsh Government and the Council will share this with residents at the earliest opportunity."
The Welsh Government has this afternoon published detailed Frequently Asked Questions about the 'circuit breaker' lockdown - which can be accessed here.