People across England, Wales and Scotland increasingly want national COVID approach

Eir NolsoeData Journalist
February 05, 2021, 2:49 PM UTC

Many Britons increasingly want COVID rules to happen at the same time for all of the UK but Scots are sceptical of handing more power to Westminster

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has suggested that England may not return to the regional tier system after the current lockdown as “the disease is behaving much more nationally”. New YouGov data shows that this is likely to sit well with the public. Many want the same approach for all of the UK.

Three in five people in England (62%) support lockdown measures happening at the same time for all of the UK regardless of the number of cases varying across areas. This is a significant change compared with in October, when only three in ten (29%) favoured this approach.

Attitudes in Wales have likewise changed. Approaching two thirds (63%) now want a coordinated approach, up from about a third (35%) in October.

Scots are less convinced at 45%, while a similar figure (46%) prefer tailored rules. But even this marks a big change. In October, only a quarter (23%) said COVID rules should apply for all of the UK simultaneously, while most (65%) were against it. 

Britons are split on whether to give more power over COVID rules to the UK government

Despite shrinking support for local lockdowns, the public are split on letting Westminster decide coronavirus measures for all of the UK rather than devolved governments making their own policies.

In England and Wales nearly half of the people (both at 47%) want Westminster to decide alone, up from respectively 38% and 34% in October.

Scottish people are not fond of handing more power over COVID rules to the UK government. Only a quarter (25%) prefer this approach, showing only a marginal uptick of +5 from October. The vast majority (69%) still believe the devolved governments should decide their own rules.

See the full results for England, Scotland and Wales