Chiswick Goes Into Voluntary Lockdown

Pubs and restaurants close as Covid cases reach unprecedented level

Hospital admissions increasing but not use of intensive care bedsHospital admissions increasing but not use of intensive care beds


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A continued surge in Covid infections, from already record levels has prompted what is effectively a voluntary lockdown across Chiswick.

Over 1,000 people in the W4 postcode area alone tested positive for the virus in the week to 19 December with cases more than doubling from what were already record levels in the previous seven days.

Most parts of Chiswick have case rates above 2,000 per 100,000 population with the highest being in Chiswick North East, at 2,409.6 and Bedford Park at 2,374.7. This means that over 2% of the population have tested positive in just seven days.

With the virus spreading so rapidly, several pubs and restaurants opted to close in the week before Christmas with difficulty getting staff usually given as the reason. Those that did stay open have seen a very low number of customers well below the Christmas season.

The Crown and Anchor, which was only operating four days a week, was closing early in the run up to Christmas and the Roebuck currently said it is planning to reopen this Monday (27 December) after being closed for most of the previous six days.

The Old Packhorse says it is planning a Boxing Day reopening after being forced to shut because of a number of regular staff members self-isolating. The Queen’s Head on Sutton Lane was planning to reopen on New Year’s Eve.

A local pub manager told us, “It has been the worst possible outcome for us. Christmas was meant to be the time when we started to make up ground again financially but we were operating at a loss on a day by day basis. Takings were well down and getting staff was becoming impossible. The £6,000 from the government is nothing in this context and it is quite clear to me they didn’t want to lockdown because it would come with the requirement to provide financial support to the hospitality industry.

“New Year’s Eve is probably a wash-out as well as, even if the government don’t lockdown, working out who is available for shifts is close to impossible. Larger chains, particularly Fuller’s can weather this, but the smaller chains and independent venues aren’t really viable at the moment. We are determined to tough it out but permanent closures can’t be ruled out.”

Even the traditional queue for turkeys outside Mackens didn’t take place this year. Under normal circumstances people have had to wait hours, but this year customers could just walk in an collect with most opting for delivery.

Chiswick’s high infection rates is significantly above the average for local boroughs, with Hounslow having one of the lowest levels in London and Ealing well below average. However, the W4 area is not seeing the amount of positive tests being seen in boroughs such as Lambeth and Wandsworth where the infection rate is above 3,000.

Covid-19 Cases in Chiswick

Area (MSOA)


Cases per 100,000
(Seven Day Rolling Rate to 19 December)

Change (%)

Chiswick North East




Bedford Park




Chiswick North West




Chiswick South East




Chiswick Park




Chiswick South West




Map showing the areas from the table above
Map showing the Middle Super Output Areas from the table above. Source: ONS

London appears to be the epi-centre of the Omicron outbreak with the rest of England have an infection rate of under 1,000 per 100,000 with the capital’s average nearly double that. Some health experts are blaming London’s relatively low vaccination rates for the high number of positive tests.

23 people died of the virus on Christmas Eve in London but the number of people with Covid-19 on mechanical ventilation beds in the capital actually fell in the week from 208 to 207. Hospitalisations are on the rise with the number of patients increasing from 1,534 on 17 December to 2,260 on Christmas Eve. Local hospitals are reporting difficulties with staffing due to frontline workers needing to self-isolate.

Kelly O’Neill, Director of Public Health for Hounslow Council said, The Omicron variant of Covid-19 currently means that we have a very high and increasing number of positive cases in the borough. This means that we all have a responsibility to protect ourselves and those around us.

"I want to urge everyone to take a few simple actions to keep us all safe. The most important thing that you can do is to make sure that you are fully vaccinated. It’s the best defence against the virus and to help protect our NHS. I have close links with the NHS, and I know first-hand the pressure that they are under and how they are only just managing to cope under the most challenging of circumstances.

"Even if you haven’t yet had your first jab then please do consider taking it. The booster vaccination is essential in giving full protection so please make sure you get this as soon as you are eligible. We have a large number of sites available for appointments and walk-ins and there is information on our website about this.

"Take a lateral flow test before meeting others; if it’s positive then follow isolation rules. Wear a face mask on public transport and in shops, this is the law and we do have enforcement officers to issue fines to all who are not exempt from wearing them. It’s just not fair to everyone if you don’t wear a mask when the rules say that you must do. Even though masks are not currently compulsory in other places such as bars and cafes you should still consider wearing one to protect other customers and staff.

"Getting out and about where possible, and seeing friends and family is vital for maintaining good mental and physical health and I hope everyone is able to do this; I just want everyone to do it safely."

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December 27, 2021

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