THE leader of Torfaen said the circuit-breaker announced by Welsh Government is “needed”

Cllr Anthony Hunt, the leader of Torfaen council, thanked residents for the “self-sacrifice” during the local lockdown in a full council meeting.

Cllr Hunt said: “I’d like to thank the vast majority of local residents for their efforts and self-sacrifice in following the local restrictions these past few weeks.

“Those efforts have had an impact locally but after reviewing the evidence and speaking to public health experts I believe the fire-breaker is needed to help prevent the rate of infection rising too quickly nationally.


“I know these efforts come at a cost, both to our economy and people’s wider wellbeing, but there are no easy choices in this pandemic, and we must keep each other safe.

“Please, please keep observing social distancing, wash hands, wearing masks in closed spaces and please also self-isolate when you have symptoms. Tests are available for anyone who needs one.

“I’d like to thank members for the collegiate and involves way they’ve approached these past few months and really helping in our communities.”

Leader of the Independent group, Cllr Ron Burnett, said it was important for the council to unite.

“Today isn’t about political point-scoring or giving quick snipes at one another. Let us think about all the hard work being done by so many trying to keep everyone safe,” he said.

“So let us think what our priorities are today; working as a united council, working together, putting our political priorities aside and putting the priorities of the people of Torfaen first and how we are all going to get through this together.”

Torfaen, along with the other 21 councils in Wales, will enter a national 17-day lockdown on Friday at 6pm.

The rules will be like the first lockdown in March and will supersede the local restrictions that are currently in place.

Torfaen went into a local lockdown on September 28, after cases rose above the seven-day average of 50 per 100,000 people. Despite having nearly been in lockdown for a month, the seven-day average currently stands at 83 per 100,000.

The Welsh Government has consistently said restrictions could only be eased once cases go below the magic 50 per 100,000.