The tier two rules explained.
Tougher restrictions on movement and gatherings are also in place in Scotland and Wales, which has additionally imposed a travel ban on people entering the region from COVID hotspots of England.
In London, infection rates are on a steep upward path, with the number of cases doubling every 10 days.
We're at a critical moment in our fight against Covid in London.
Speaking earlier at City Hall, London mayor Sadiq Khan had indicated the tougher measures were on the way because there is "simply no other option" as he warned of a hard winter ahead.
When is London being moved into tier two?
"Ultimately we need to take action; we can't have a situation as we have seen in Manchester where Andy Burnham is effectively trying to hold the government over a barrel over money and politics", said Raab.
Nicholls said it would be "incredibly damaging without additional financial support and urge you to work with us to secure that is in place before any changes to London's classification is made".
Sky News reported that a letter sent by Kate Nicholls, chief executive of UKHospitality, to Khan said that 250,000 jobs were at risk due to London being put in a higher tier. Hancock said that discussions remain ongoing about areas that need to be moved into this highest alert category.
The ban on households mixing indoors could be devastating for more than 5,000 pubs and nearly 8,500 restaurants in the newly-designated Tier 2 regions, which will see business suffer but will not be eligible for Government support available to premises which have been ordered to close. There is also guidance against travelling in and out of the area.
"It is my expectation that the government will today announce that London will shortly be moving into tier 2 or the high alert level of restrictions", Khan said.
The latest decision was announced after the new three-level COVID-19 alert system came into force Wednesday across England, with the level being decided according to local infection rates.
Earlier in the week, most of the country was on medium alert in Tier 1, which means subject to the national restrictions now in force, including the rule of six on indoor and outdoor gatherings and 10 pm closing time for pubs, bars and restaurants.
For the third and highest tier, further restrictions may be agreed for particular regions, such as closure of gyms, leisure centres, betting shops and casinos.