Chief Minister announced changes

After wishing us all a Merry Christmas and promising to see us in the New Year, HQ, Ashy and Dr Henny were called back to explain what the worsening situation in the UK means for the island. They announced a wide range of measures which will impact on residents, key workers and many more people coming and going from the island. You can see Gef’s briefing update here.

How the Channel Islands are doing

Since Sunday Jersey has seen over 150 positive Covid tests and on Monday reported that it had 1,019 active cases out of a population of about 107,000. Meanwhile in Guernsey, it is reported that as of Monday evening, the island had four active cases. The Isle of Man by comparison has three.

Postman Pat can’t deliver that 

All postal services to Europe (excluding the Republic of Ireland), Turkey and Canada have been suspended with the Isle of Man Post Office recommending that customers don’t mail items to international destinations due to significant delays. A spokesperson said: ‘These restrictions are due  to international concerns over the spread of the new variant of coronavirus which is impacting on the transportation of mail. 

‘The UK gov is working to unblock the borders as fast as possible and Royal Mail are working to explore alternative options. We are closely monitoring the situation and will reopen services as soon as we are able to do so once the restrictions have been lifted.’

Santa Claus and late night shopping

Shoppers will have one last chance to grab a late night bargain on Wednesday as Douglas Town Centre Management confirmed stores in the capital will stay open longer. And for any boys and girls concerned the postal problems will affect their letters reaching Santa can visit him at the Strand Shopping Centre from 5.30pm to 8.30pm, just to be sure the big man has their list.

Resolving the French Connection

A deal looks to have been struck that will allow British freight to leave England to reach the continent. Sky News has reported that the deal involves rapid turnaround lateral flow tests being conducted on lorry drivers with the help of the military. More than 1,500 truckers are queuing on the M20 or parked at Kent’s Manston Airport, following France’s decision to stop anyone entering from the UK for 48 hours due to the new Covid strain. However Ireland has announced it has extended its travel ban with Great Britain, but not Northern Ireland, to December 31.

Covid on Ice

Covid has now reached every continent on earth as the first cases have been confirmed in Antarctica. The Chilean army announced that 36 people linked with the General Bernardo O’Higgins Riquelme Base at the South Pole had tested positive for the virus.