Welsh First Minister Mark Drakeford will write to Boris Johnson today to offer him "one final opportunity" to restrict people from coronavirus hotspots in England from travelling into Wales.

Mr Drakeford said he would share evidence that travelling from areas with high prevalence of Covid-19 into areas with low prevalence contributes to the spread of the virus, and would be prepared to block entry into the country.

Currently, Powys, which sits on the border with Herefordshire, has one of the lowest coronavirus infection rates in Wales.

The figures, for the seven days to October 5, are based on tests carried out in NHS Wales laboratories and tests conducted on Welsh residents processed in commercial laboratories.

The rate is expressed as the number of new cases per 100,000 people, and stands at 31.0 in Powys – the fourth lowest of 22 local authorities in Wales.

For the same period, the rate in Herefordshire stood at 21.3 cases per 100,000 people.

It comes following concerns that people in English lockdown areas are currently allowed to travel to areas of Wales where there are no restrictions in place and levels of the virus are low.


In Wales, however, people under lockdown can only leave their areas for essential travel such as to go to work.

The Prime Minister has so far refused to back Mr Drakeford's call to issue a travel ban for English residents living under lockdowns, leading to the First Minister expressing "deep disappointment" after Monday's Cobra meeting.

Speaking to BBC Wales on Monday evening, Mr Drakeford said: "UK ministers were asking me today for the evidence that tells you that if people come from high areas to low areas, that spreads the virus. We've got that evidence, we'll share that with the Prime Minister.

"And I will set out in my letter the powers we have and, if he doesn't act then, we will use them. But I want to offer him one final opportunity to do the right thing. Because that would be fair to people in Wales and people across our border.

"I don't want it to be a border issue. People in England in high incidence areas should not be going to low incidence areas in England, either."

Mr Drakeford has been backed by Plaid Cymru leader Adam Price, who has said he is "livid" that Mr Johnson was refusing to issue to the travel restrictions.

Encouraging Mr Drakeford to use Welsh powers to ban travel into the country, Mr Price said on Twitter: "Begging letters to Tory Prime Ministers have never really worked for Wales. It's time to stop waiting on Westminster and take action ourselves, instead."