The government has announced a major Greater Manchester lockdown.
Mr Hancock wrote on Twitter: “We’re constantly looking at the latest data on the spread of coronavirus, and unfortunately we’ve seen an increasing rate of transmission in parts of Northern England.
“We’ve been working with local leaders across the region, and today I chaired a meeting of the Local Action Gold Committee.
“Based on the data, we decided that in Greater Manchester, parts of West Yorkshire & East Lancashire we need to take immediate action to keep people safe.
“The spread is largely due to households meeting and not abiding to social distancing.
“So from midnight tonight, people from different households will not be allowed to meet each other indoors in these areas.
“We take this action with a heavy heart, but we can see increasing rates of covid across Europe and are determined to do whatever is necessary to keep people safe.”
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