WORCESTER'S MP says the vaccine rollout that will lead to the loosing of Covid lockdown restrictions will be a "unprecedented challenge", but Worcestershire is already ahead of other places.

Robin Walker said: "The vaccines can be rolled out at scale, it is a question of how quickly that can be achieved in order to be able to relax measures. Of course, the same as last time, if the measures we have taken reduce the R rate then there is the hope measures could be released sooner. But realistically we are going to be waiting until February before we see changes."

Harriett Baldwin, West Worcestershire MP, said: “I am sure everyone will share my shock and disappointment the new, highly infectious variant of the virus has spread so rapidly that these extreme measures need to be taken. Closing schools to most pupils is an absolute last resort but it is clear from local and national briefings that without such drastic action, our local NHS might be overwhelmed.

“Parliament will be recalled again, tomorrow, to hear and debate all the national data and the treasury is developing a package of support measures to continue to protect people’s jobs and livelihoods.

“The local plans to roll out the vaccines are well underway and I urge people to study and follow the new rules and stay safe while this vaccination programme is broadened to protect many more people and allow our county and our economy to unlock again as soon as possible.”

Mid Worcestershire MP Nigel Huddleston said: "Government decisions throughout this pandemic have been made based on evidence. When evidence shows a sharp surge in cases, we need to change our policies just as quickly. There will no doubt be quick changes in policies in the future as this virus continues to adapt and circumstances continue to change, but I am very hopeful that we will start seeing the impact of the vaccine by next month. I was on a call with Health Minister, Nadhim Zahawi, (on Monday) for an update on the vaccine roll-out and I am encouraged that everyone involved is doing their utmost to ensure it moves as quickly as possible.”