North East Hertfordshire MP Sir Oliver Heald has opposed the placing of his constituency under Tier 4 restrictions.

On Saturday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that parts of London, the South East and East of England, including Hertfordshire, would move from Tier 3 into the new Tier 4 - meaning that all non-essential businesses have to close and households will no longer be able to meet over Christmas, with the exception of support bubbles.

Commenting on the decision, Sir Oliver said: “I have been arguing strongly to Matt Hancock that the tier designation should reflect the level of infection in our area.

"Clearly there are parts of Hertfordshire with high infection levels, but it is not the case in North Hertfordshire District. North Hertfordshire abuts Uttlesford and South Cambridgeshire, which are in Tier 2.

"I have also made a plea for East Hertfordshire. I continue to press the case strongly with ministers because I recognise that this is causing great hardship and it is simply not fair.”

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Meanwhile Cllr Martin Stears-Handscomb, the leader of North Herts district council, emphasised the importance of tougher measures to protect people from the virus.