TODAY is the first day of the coronavirus local lockdown which was enforced in parts of the North East including, Newcastle, Gateshead, Sunderland, North Tyneside, South Tyneside, Northumberland and County Durham.

Residents in Newcastle and Gateshead spoke about whether they understand the restrictions and how the new guidance would impact their day-to-day lives.

Sophie Brunton, a student at Gateshead College, said: "I understand that you can't see anyone outside of your family but you can go to college and sit in a group of 16 to 15 people - it doesn't make sense.

"I don't think anyone will take notice of it. Luckily, I had no plans this weekend.

"I don't understand how you can't continue to see family members but you can go to a pub where you can drink - it just doesn't make sense."

Richard Thompson, 17, also at Gateshead College, said: "I worry it's going to get worse. But the local lockdown is not going to do anything."

Sophie added: "I don't want it to affect anyone I know.

"And we don't want to go back into a [national] lockdown."

Alesha Kane, a resident from Gateshead, who works at a softplay in Washington, said: "The new rules are confusing. I don't think it'll work. I work in a softplay in Washington and we've had to limit the people coming in.

"But to be honest we're doing what we were doing before."

From today (Friday) it is against the law to meet two other households in indoor and outdoor settings in private homes, and gardens, unless in a support bubble.

Keith Lindsay, from Benhsam in Gateshead, said: "No one understands the rules!

"I definitely don't really understand them. I think you have to keep with your household and being with your bubble.

"To be honest [the government] are a bunch of useless such and such's.

"The only way it's going to affect me really is when going to a pub after 10pm.

"You do what you can and when you can, I suppose."

From tonight night pubs, restaurants, leisure venues and bingo halls had to close at 10pm and cannot reopen until 5am - under the new rules.

Jakub Olpski, from Whickam in Gateshead, said: "I don't know what the new rules are.

"It doesn't really make a difference to me personally. I've not followed what the new local lockdown rules are.

"There was a letter from Gateshead Council that said they might change.

"I do feel safe. I don't know if the local lockdown will make a change.

"The only changes will be the businesses like the restaurants and places like that."

The official guidance, which is titled Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (North East of England) Regulations 2020, was published today on

Anne Forster and her mam Anne Sarsfield from Newcastle said they would be affected as they had a surprise birthday party planned next weekend.

Ms Forster said: "We had a surprise 30th birthday party planned next weekend which has been spoiled. We were supposed to have friends from London come up to it.

"As it is for us you can still do everything - the pubs will be closing at 10pm.

"I don't think it's going to work, but then we don't want another lockdown again for the carers and other staff especially."

Currently Darlington and Teesside are not included in the local restrictions and do not have to follow the local lockdown guidance.