Boozy New Years Eve to be free from Covid curbs despite rising Omicron fears

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Next week's New Year's Eve celebrations in England will be free from any new Coronavirus restrictions, sources have claimed.

It is now rumoured that the big end-of-year celebrations can take place without being hampered by the introduction of any new Covid rules due to the time it would take to recall parliament, Mail Online reports.

Despite the record-breaking rise in cases this week, experts have revealed that the new Omicron Covid variant is up to 70% less likely to cause hospitalisations, compared to the Delta variant that the world has been battling for most of the year.

This means that indoor face coverings and the need to show vaccine passports on the NHS app could be the only rules to count during the celebrations period.

The likely lack of new rules has been welcomed by political commentator, Olivia Essem.

The 22-year-old exclusively told the Daily Star that not introducing restrictions is “absolutely the right decision”.

She said: “There’s lots of encouraging evidence that this new strain is less severe than the others, and we already have Plan B restrictions in place.

“The constant reports over the past week speculating about new restrictions has been really heard to hear, so I’m very pleased with this news, if it happens.

“Lockdowns and restrictions have taken a huge toll on my mental health, more than I ever thought possible, so I’m keeping everything crossed that we are moving in the right direction.

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“Waiting for more data is a wise decision and hopefully over the next few weeks they can begin to look at removing the restrictions we do have at the moment.

“After an awful two years, it will do wonders for the country to have a merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, and I’m looking forward to continuing normally and, as a young person, I am very happy with this news.”

However, Ms Essem did clarify that the government needs to give “more certainty” regarding the potential of any further restrictions in the new year, but without a change in the data, it would be an “extreme overreaction”.

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Despite the rare glimmer of hope, SAGE experts are still claiming that the NHS could become overwhelmed because of staff being forced to isolate if they test positive for the virus.

Labour MP Rosie Duffield told the Daily Star that the Government has "left people to decide for themselves" and weigh up the safety of their communities versus "being able to enjoy Christmas and New Year with friends and family".

She added: "Many are confused by the lack of clear messaging around Omicron and hospitality businesses have been left with very little support at what should be their most profitable time after another bleak year."

  • Christmas
  • Coronavirus
  • Omicron
  • Covid vaccine

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