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The London Mayor has joined calls for a national circuit breaker lockdown that could “avoid months and months” of additional restrictions.

Sadiq Khan criticised Boris Johnson‘s decision to reject the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) group advice on introducing a national lockdown during the October half term.

Minutes previously released by Sage revealed the Prime Minister was urged three weeks ago to shut pubs, bars, restaurants, gyms, hair salons and move university teaching online.

Mr Khan told LBC: “Actually what Sage say is the most effective way to slow down the spread of the virus, is to have for a couple of weeks a national circuit breaker lockdown which would be really hard for those two weeks.

“But it would avoid months and months of additional restrictions.

“Unfortunatley the Government has rejected that advice from Sage and so what we’re left with is these three buckets – tier 1, tier 2 and tier 3.

“There are trigger points between each of the tiers and they are really restrictive of our liberties but also damaging to businesses, council budgets, and to individuals potentially.”

Starmer claims Manchester local leaders support circuit breaker

The London Mayor suggested the UK Government follow the strategies of Governments in France and Norway and provide “proper first support” until the “crucial” NHS test and trace system is “sorted out”.

“I recognise the huge hardship caused to particularly hospitality, the pubs bars and restaurats, but also culture, leisure, retail, tourism, but also individuals and workers who have had to take time off work,” said Mr Khan.

When asked whether he agreed with Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham who is resisting stricter lockdown measures, or Liverpool Mayor Steve Rotheram, Mr Khan said it was not a question of pitting the two against one another.

Mr Khan added that he believes leaders across the country want to be the Government’s “allies and not their adversaries.”

It comes after Wales’ First Minister Mark Drakeford said the Welsh Government is “looking very carefully” at introducing a circuit-breaker lockdown to slow the spread of coronavirus in Wales.

The Welsh Government also confirmed on Friday that a travel ban preventing people from areas of the UK with high levels of Covid-19 from entering Wales will come into force later today.

Meanwhile, scientists backing proposals for a circuit breakder during the half-term are reportedly calling on the Government to consider repeating the lockdown measures during all of the school holidays.

Professor Graham Medley, an expert in infectious disease modelling at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, and member of Sage, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme a week isn’t long enough for a circuit breaker.

“Somebody who’s infected the day before you go into that break would still be infectious when you came out,” said Professor Medley.

“You need at least one generation of infection, so people who were infected before, to stop being infected by the end, so it would need to be at least two weeks.”