THE Government is "preparing to place Bradford into Tier 3", Bradford West MP Naz Shah has said. 

It comes as talks between local leaders and Government officials continue today.

Yesterday, Council leader Susan Hinchcliffe said the Government was "unflinching in their resolve" to place the district into the highest level of Covid-19 alert.

Ms Shah told the Telegraph & Argus: "With the government preparing to place Bradford into Tier 3, with no exit strategy in sight, it highlights the government has no plan to control this virus.

"SAGE suggests there needs to be a complete circuit breaker, Labour is supporting that suggestion, and it's time the government listened and acted to prevent a further escalation to the current health and economic crisis."

Meanwhile, Bradford Council leader Susan Hinchcliffe has denied the region is in a “stand-off” with government about entering Tier 3 restrictions as long-running talks continue amid rising hospital admissions.

She said on Wednesday that it appeared the Government was “unflinching in their resolve” to place the region into Tier 3 as another day passed without a decision.

But Cllr Hinchliffe, who is also the chairwoman of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority, told Today on BBC Radio 4 on Thursday she would not describe it as a “stand-off”.

The talks have been ongoing as hospitals in West Yorkshire announced the cancellation of some routine operations as numbers of Covid-19 patients on wards reached levels higher than in the April/May peak.

Cllr Hinchliffe told Today: “I wouldn’t call it a stand-off.”

She said the “only thing that’s worked” is a national approach but added: “I’ve been told there’s no prospect of a national lockdown.”

The councillor said: “The whole country was in it together and doing things together.

“There is something about people following rules and wanting to see the fairness of it all.”

In her statement on Wednesday, Cllr Hinchliffe said it was unclear what support would be offered to businesses in the event of a move to the higher tier but the Government had told council leaders it would be a “template package” with no room for negotiation.

She said: “It is clear from our conversations so far that Government are unflinching in their resolve to put Bradford and West Yorkshire into Tier 3.

“Our local residents and our local businesses need certainty about whether we are going into Tier 3 or not.”

Earlier this week, MPs and councillors in Kirklees came together to say Tier 3 rules would have a “devastating effect” on the economy and mental health.