WORCESTERSHIRE will move into tier 3 tomorrow, December 31.
The new restrictions will come into effect at one minute past midnight following an announcement by Health Secretary Matt Hancock in parliament this afternoon.
It means the county will remain in tier 2 for only a few hours more, a decision based on a sharp rise in cases.
Non-essential shops can stay open, as can gyms, hairdressers and other personal care businesses in tier 3 areas.
Hospitality venues such as pubs and restaurants must close, except if they offer a delivery or takeaway service.
Hotels and other accommodation providers must also close, except for specific work purposes where people cannot return home.
People are asked not meet others socially indoors or in most outdoor places with anybody they do not live with.
This includes in any private garden or at most outdoor venues.
Confirmed cases in the county have increased by 40 per cent over the last seven days with 212 per 100,000 people now testing positive for Coronavirus.