The County Council of Leicestershire explained why the Leicester block border follows the line it does.
The council has been inundated with questions and complaints from angry and confused residents since it produced a map on Tuesday morning, 12 hours after the dramatic announcement by health secretary Matt Hancock, on how the blocking border arrived.
Many residents questioned the decision to include some areas and roads and not others in the tighter restrictions that will last at least until July 18th.
County chief Nick Rushton said: “Since the Secretary of State’s announcement on Monday evening, we have been working hard to provide clear information.
“A map was available on our website on Tuesday, with a list of the areas affected.
“This was followed by a zip code check on Tuesday evening which received 120,000 visits in a single day.
“Clearly, people are worried and want to know the answers to detailed questions. We have tried to answer as many as possible through our social media, website and telephone lines and we have put together a list of frequently asked questions on our website.
“We are aware that there are concerns in particular regarding the blockade limit, but it is important to remember that the current situation is a reminder for all of us to be vigilant.”
“Therefore, it makes sense to step up restrictions in areas closest to the city and the elaborate border is based on the latest Public Health England data,” added Coun Rushton.
“Although we are not seeing a link [in the county] With the surge in city cases, the blockade area within the county aligns with areas where we have seen higher numbers in the county and continue to monitor the situation regularly.
“It is imperative that people follow the latest advice: observe social distances, wash their hands, wear a mask where required and get tested if you have symptoms of Covid-19 – it remains absolutely vital.”
In a briefing with the councilors, some of whom were abused along the boundary route, Coun Rushton said that his public health team and Public Health England were asked to collaborate with the Leicester City Council to define the area around the city border that could be influenced by the spread of the virus and prevent its spread.
He said: “When drawing up the map, it was natural that the areas of the county closest to the city were drawn.
“Given ONS [Office for National Statistics] the data define the area around Leicester also as an “urban area”, which provided a statistical justification for considering the boundaries of the blockade area.
“I asked for this ONS classification and I was told that using population density, the definition” urban “is defined by ONS as all physical settlements with a population of 10,000 or more.
“If most of the population in a given production area (OA) lives in such a settlement, that OA is considered” urban “.”
The counselor said that expert advice from the Public Health England epidemiologist also contributed to the map, which had to be produced in a very short period of time in order to adapt to the government’s schedule, including drafting the emergency legislation that requires references to postal codes.
He added: “It was also advised to me, and I can certainly see the point, that natural geography was the most important factor here rather than the particular scale of infection in any settlement near the city.
“I am also aware that any map developed under these circumstances would be unpopular in some areas, but I think someone should recognize that a deadly virus does not respect administrative boundaries.
“Over the years we have seen many reports of houses on one side of the road receiving services other than those on the other side, and we are all familiar with the phrase” postal lottery “in the context of the NHS.
“Nothing is perfect and this includes this map.”