A COUNCIL leader is urging residents to not stockpile food and essential items as parts of the Amman Valley goes into lockdown.

Welsh Government has announced that Neath Port Talbot is to be subject of additional local restrictions from 6pm today (Monday, September 28) following further increases in infection rates within the county borough and in light of the county borough sharing a border where infection rates are already much higher.

It means new measures are being introduced to protect people’s health and to control the spread of the virus.

They include:

  • People will not be allowed to enter or leave the area without a reasonable excuse, such as travel for work or education
  • People will only be able to meet people they don’t live with outdoors for the time being. They will not be able to form, or be in, extended households (sometimes known as ‘bubbles’). This means meeting indoors (in people’s houses, in a pub or elsewhere) with anyone you don’t live with is not allowed at the moment unless you have a good reason, such as providing care to a vulnerable person.
  • All licensed premises have to stop serving alcohol at 10pm.
  • Everyone over 11 will be required to wear face coverings in indoor places, which are open to the public, such as shops, as well as on public transport – as is the case in the rest of Wales. (There are some limited exemptions for people with disabilities and medical conditions – these are the same as for public transport).

The new restrictions will apply to everyone living in Neath Port Talbot.

Cllr. Rob Jones, Leader of NPT Council said: “These restrictions are being imposed to protect public health, to protect you and your loved ones, and to stop people dying.

“Rates are much higher in local authority areas which border our county borough but we are now seeing rising rates here in Neath Port Talbot.

“We need the help of everyone across Neath Port Talbot to prevent the increasing spread of coronavirus and to bring the infection rates back down; it’s in all our interests to do that.

“I would also urge residents not to build up stocks of food and other essential items - supermarkets and other food suppliers have good supplies. There is no need to be concerned about stocks running low or to panic-buy.

“We appreciate that residents and businesses will naturally be concerned following the Welsh Government's announcement of local restrictions for Neath Port Talbot and that you will have lots of questions. We are expecting detailed guidance and a list of Frequently Asked Questions about the new restrictions from the Welsh Government, and we will share details of these as soon as possible.

“We will also be contacting our most vulnerable residents this week to offer reassurance and a safety net to those who may need support.

“I urge everyone to follow the new rules."

NPT Council will be working with South Wales Police to enforce these measures where that proves necessary.