Senior officers leading Pembrokeshire County Council’s response to the pandemic have met online this morning (Sunday, December 20) to review the new lockdown restrictions and how they will affect the county.

It follows yesterday’s announcement by the First Minister that Wales would move into alert level four at midnight.

“We want to assure everyone that the authority is working hard to ensure that we are keeping our communities safe,” said Cllr David Simpson, council leader.

“We have processes in place and are working with other key agencies.

“These are unprecedented times, however, we can work through this to ensure we can get back to normal as soon as possible.

“Everyone has a role to play and today we are sending out the request that we all work together, safely, and adhere to the guidance.

“Mixing with others heightens the spread of this virus. Please stay at home, please stay safe.”

The following Council services have been immediately affected by the Tier 4 restrictions:

• Leisure centres – closed until further notice

• Libraries – closed until further notice

• Waste and Recycling Centres – open for pre-booked slots for essential use at present. Officers are liaising with the Welsh Government on future arrangements.

Details of further changes will be announced as soon as possible.

The move into Tier 4 follows worrying evidence of a new highly-infectious strain of coronavirus in Wales and in London and South East England.

The latest information suggests the new strain is present throughout Wales and may be driving the rapid acceleration of the virus seen across Wales over the last few weeks.

Alert level four restrictions were due to come into force over the Christmas period but have been brought forward.

Changes are also being made to the Christmas rules in Wales – in common with changes being made elsewhere in the UK – two households will be able to join together but only on Christmas Day.

“We would urge everyone to adhere strictly to the new rules and exercise the utmost caution in their everyday lives in the interest of their safety and others,” said Cllr Simpson.