Northern MP scorns London media 'who have only just discovered' lockdown rules

DUDLEY, ENGLAND - MARCH 08: Lisa Nandy, MP for Wigan reacts as she takes part in the last Labour Party Leadership hustings at Dudley Town Hall on March 08, 2020 in Dudley, England. Sir Keir Starmer, Rebecca Long-Bailey and Lisa Nandy are vying to replace Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, who is stepping down following his party's loss in the December 2019 general election. The new leader and deputy will be announced on 4 April, 2020.  (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
Wigan MP Lisa Nandy (Getty Images)

A leading northern MP has scorned London media outlets “who have only just discovered” the complexities of local lockdown rules.

It comes after the announcement that London will be placed under harsher Tier 2 restrictions on Saturday, in line with many parts of northern England.

Labour’s Lisa Nandy, Wigan MP and shadow foreign secretary, suggested national news outlets have not respected the fact millions of people in the north have been living under complicated restrictions for months.

She tweeted:

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Boris Johnson introduced the “simplified” three-tier lockdown system on Monday to replace his previous strategy of imposing different sets of restrictions on different areas.

These were often considered confusing, with Yahoo News UK pointing out in early August that people in parts of the north were able to visit a pub or eat in a restaurant, where the risk of COVID-19 transmission is higher than outdoors.

At the same time, however, the rules stated people weren’t allowed to sit in the garden of a friend or family member, where the chances of being infected are low.

Watch: Hancock confirms tougher restrictions for London and other parts of England

In referring to “national journalists”, Nandy was pointing to the London-centric nature of national news outlets.

The offices of most – including Yahoo News UK – are in or near central London, though the advent of home working during the pandemic could result in more journalists working outside the capital in the future.

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In the past, Nandy has called for a major shake-up of the BBC to stop decisions being made “by a small group of men behind a desk” in the capital.

Speaking in February during her Labour leadership campaign, Nandy suggested she would overhaul the ownership of the broadcaster and also ensure commissioning decisions for the BBC and Channel 4 are moved out of London.

Watch: Can you catch Covid twice?

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