STRICTER coronavirus measures have been introduced across Bolton to control infections in the borough.

Earlier today, new rules were put into place banning residents from certain activities after a "concerning rise" in new cases.

All hospitality venues, such as pubs, cafes, and restaurants, will be forced to operate as takeaway only establishments for the near future.

A curfew on these places will prevent the sites opening between 10pm and 5am, with authorities set to increase enforcement for those who break the rules.

The current ban on meeting people from outside your household, introduced by Bolton Council on Saturday, will be brought into law at the earliest possible opportunity.

Speaking in the House of Commons, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “Unfortunately, after improving for several weeks, we have seen a very significant and concerning rise in cases in Bolton.

“Bolton is now up to 120 cases per 100,000, the highest case rate in the country. Working with the local Council, we are taking further local action.

“I want to say directly to everyone living in Bolton: I know how anxious this can be and I know the impact that these measures will have but we need to take this crucial step to keep this virus at bay.”

Socialising with people you don't live with will be made illegal, with police given the legal power to uphold this rule.

Existing measures making face coverings mandatory on public transport and in shops will continue to apply.

Anyone found breaking these rules may be fined.

Data has shown the rise in cases in Bolton is partly due to socialising by people in their 20s and 30s, with people of all ages urged to practice social distancing.

The current measures came into effect immediately, and will be constantly reviewed.