As things stand,
Greater Manchester will be forced into tier three on Friday, against the wishes of local leaders, after talks over a financial support package collapsed. Right now, the region will get £22m, but the government says an offer of £60m “remains on the table”. Six local Conservative MPs have written to Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham, who said the £60m offer was too low, accusing him of putting his ego above people’s best interests. The situation certainly looks like a political failure, says the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg. Meanwhile, talks continue later about whether South Yorkshire will be next to enter the “very high” alert level.