Andy Burnham blasts toxic Scottish nationalism after Covid travel row – 'We’re not daft'

Labour mayor Andy Burnham unleashed upon one Manchester visitor after the upset traveller lashed out against the mayor on Twitter. “Visiting Manchester, because every now and then I must,” tweeted avid independentist NetherSchot from Melrose, Scotland.

“I’m on a bus, wearing a mask.

“Nobody else is doing that, and some of the people are coughing.

“They have not even learnt to cough into their hands or elbows.

“Andy Burnham, don’t cry if Mancunians get banned from Scotland again.”

The comments allude to the temporary travel restriction which was introduced between Scotland and several areas of the Northwest of England in June in a bid to stop the spread of the virus.

Scottish Health Minister Humza Yousaf said: “Placing restrictions on travel between Scotland and parts of north-west England was only taken after extremely careful consideration and analysis of data to help prevent the spread of variants of concern.”

However, the ban was quickly lifted after only 8 days.

Mr Burnham branded the restrictions “totally disproportionate” in an open letter to MSPs.

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To which the mayor answered: “We heard what you said, lad. We’re not daft.”

According to Public Health England, the Greater Manchester region has been hit by some of the highest Covid rates in the country for much of the past 19 months.

While its current figures are more in line with the rest of the country, case numbers remain steeper than at other points during the pandemic.

Manchester Evening News (MEN) went to the streets in Ashton-under-Lyne to meet with Mancunians on Friday and check whether they wear masks outside.

They report that more than three months on from so-called “freedom day”, many still prefer to keep face coverings off, and opinion is divided over whether more measures are needed to clamp down on Covid case numbers.

For most residents who spoke to the local newspaper, the Covid vaccine had given them a sense of confidence which led to some not wearing their masks outside.

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