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New national restrictions to stop Covid-19

new measures stop covid
Yesterday (Tuesday 22 September) the government outlined new measures for England to help stop the spread of Covid-19. Similar restrictions were introduced across the UK.

The new restrictions, which aim to prevent the current increase in cases being seen across London and nationally, include:

  • Working from home where possible: Office workers are being told to work from home again if they can do so. People should continue to attend their workplaces where this is not possible.
  • Hospitality venues: From Thursday 24 September, all pubs, bars and restaurants will be restricted to table service only. Takeaways can continue. Also from Thursday, hospitality venues must close at 10pm (which means shutting then, not calling for last orders, although deliveries can continue).
  • Face coverings: The requirement to wear a face covering will be extended to retail staff, all users of taxis and private hire vehicles, and staff and customers in indoor hospitality, except when seated at a table to eat or drink.
  • Gatherings and the 'rule of six': Exemptions to the rule of six will be cut back. From Monday 28 September, only 15 people will be able to attend weddings and civil partnerships, in groups of six. Funerals can still take place with up to 30 people. Also from Monday, you can only play indoor sports in groups of less than six. 
  • Further ahead: The planned return of business conferences, exhibitions and large sporting events will no longer be possible from Thursday 1 October.
  • Shielding: Please note, the guidance for people who were shielding earlier in the pandemic continues to be that shielding is not required, but the government is keeping this under constant review.
  • Enforcement: Penalties for not wearing a mask or gathering in groups of more than six will increase to £200 on the first offence.
  • Covid-secure measures: In retail, leisure, tourism and other sectors, the Covid-secure guidelines will become legal obligations. Businesses will be fined and could be closed if they breach these rules.

Remember, support to self-isolate is available from the council. Please let us know if you need help. If you have family, friends or neighbours who may be vulnerable or feeling lonely at the moment, please keep in touch with them.

More information is available in our dedicated Covid-19 section. You can also sign up for updates.

Posted on Wednesday 23rd September 2020