Conservative party chairman Oliver Dowden has urged people to “keep calm and carry on” with their Christmas celebrations this year, despite soaring daily cases and now the new Omicron variant hitting the UK.
The UK Health Security Agency’s Dr Jenny Harries has urged the public this week not to unnecessarily socialise.
One member of the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (Nervtag) who are a group of influential government scientific advisors has warned that he would not feel safe going to a Christmas party this year.
However, the Prime Minister Boris Johnson has insisted there is no need to cancel plans this Christmas despite the new variant Omicron sweeping across the UK.
Dowden told Sky News, “The message to people, I think, is fairly straightforward, which is keep calm, carry on with your Christmas plans.
“We’ve put the necessary restrictions in place, but beyond that keep calm and carry on.
“I understand that people have concerns around the new variant.
“That’s why the government has taken the sort of measures that we’ve already outlined … we think those are sufficient at this stage and, beyond that, people should continue with their plans as intended.”
Dowden added, that if people are “worried” or have any concerns then they should “make sure that they take that booster” and, “I think people can continue with their Christmas plans and I’d encourage people to do so.”
Companies are cancelling Christmas parties in their droves amid the emergence of the new variant which is sweeping across the UK.
The Business Minister George Freeman told LBC radio that he has cancelled his party with staff this year.
Freeman added, that he does not want to be seen telling businesses what “they should or shouldn’t be doing.”
Other government departments and Google have also announced that they will be cancelling Christmas staff get-togethers.
Sir Martin told the BBC, “The uncertainty is extreme and government policy, understandably, I mean to be a little bit sympathetic to the government, it is an extremely difficult situation.
“But we have been through this before with Delta and the previous variants, so you would have thought the government would be a little bit more prepared for what may or may not happen in terms of scenario planning.”