Police to stop people getting into cars and onto trains heading out of Tier 4

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Brits getting into cars and onto trains to try and get out of Tier 4 areas will be stopped by police, health secretary Matt Hancock claimed on Sunday morning.

Speaking on the BBC's Andrew Marr show, Mr Hancock was asked if officers will be stationed on roads and in stations to stop Brits flouting the new rules, which came into place in London and the south east on Sunday morning.

He replied: "Of course. It's the police's responsibility to police the law".

The news comes in the wake of shocking scenes of huge crowds at London stations on Saturday night as people tried to flee to capital ahead of the new rules coming into force.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has also urged people only to come to train stations in areas under the toughest restrictions if they are "permitted" to travel.

Mr Shapps said: "It is incredibly important that people follow the guidance, stay at home and do not attempt to travel. Our focus must be stopping the spread of this virus, protecting lives and our NHS.

"If you are in Tier 4, the law means you must stay at home and you cannot stay overnight away from home. Across the rest of the country, you must stay local.

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"Follow the guidance and please do not come to a station unless you are permitted to travel. Extra BTP officers are being deployed to ensure only those who need to take essential journeys can travel safely."

Hancock claimed that the tough new measures in the south were brought in to try and prevent a new national lockdown in January.

Asked whether a national lockdown was inevitable, Hancock said: "Not necessarily, one of the reasons we brought in the strict travel movements in tier 4… is to try to stop this new variant from spreading."

On Sunday Hancock also admitted that the government believes the newly discovered and more infectious strain of Covid-19 is now "out of control".

And in a startling pre-Christmas Covid warning the day after Boris Johnson effectively cancelled Christmas for millions, the health secretary said everyone waking up in the new Tier 4 areas this morning "should act like they have" this new strain.

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