Andy Burnham slaps down PM’s ‘£100m Tier 3 lockdown offer’ – as Manchester ‘runs out of hospital beds’


MANCHESTER Mayor Andy Burnham today slapped down Boris Johnson’s offer of tens of millions of pounds of extra cash for the region – saying it wasn’t about “the size of the cheque”.

The Northern city now looks to be forced into a Tier three lockdown without his consent as it gets close to running out of emergency hospital beds.

Andy Burnham said today that ‘nothing has changed’ and the Government still haven’t come up with the package he wants

The Manchester Mayor has been locked in a furious row for days over extra support for the area – as the Government try to get him to agree to further restrictive measures.

Tier three – where Lancashire and the Liverpool city region are in now – have forced bars to close which don’t serve food, and gyms and other indoor areas in some places too.

Mr Burnham told Sky News this morning that “nothing has changed” and he still has yet to see a financial package he was happy with.

He wants the Government to promised 80 per cent pay for staff whose firms are forced to shut – more than the two thirds the Chancellor has stumped up so far.

Mr Burnham said today: “It’s not about the size of the cheque, it’s about protecting low-paid workers, people who are self-employed and supporting businesses.”

Ministers today hinted that if no agreement was reached today they would be forced to take action without their support.

And Business Sec Alok Sharma said today he hopes “the Manchester Mayor will play his part”.

He told LBC: “If the current rate of infections in Manchester continue, you will have more people with Covid in intensive care in Manchester than in the last peak.

“I am sure Andy Burnham doesn’t want that.

“I hope over the coming day or so we will see resolution in Manchester.

“Andy Burnham needs to make a decision now.

“We want this thing done, now.”

He was asked if the Manchester Mayor was “putting lives at risk”.

He replied: “There is no doubt the longer this goes on the greater the risk to the people of Manchester.”