National lockdown restrictions have come into force today, severely limiting people’s movements and forcing a number of businesses to close.
The restrictions are set to be in place until Wednesday December 2, and providing the rate of infection falls, these will be lifted, with individual areas placed under tiered restrictions based on the latest regional data.
Restrictions under ‘lockdown 2.0’ are as follows:
- Stay at home, except for specific purposes.
- Avoid meeting people you do not live with, except for specific purposes.
- Close certain businesses and venues.
The new measures will be underpinned by law, with police and other authorities having the power to hand out fines and break up gatherings.
Here, we have broken down the rules for you to help give you a better understanding of what you can and cannot do for the next month.
Stay at home
You must not leave or be outside of your home except for specific purposes such as work or volunteer services; to shop for essential items; to go to school; to exercise outdoors or visit an outdoor public place (as many times a day as you like); for medical reasons such as getting a Covid test; to visit someone who is giving birth or dying; to avoid or escape risk of injury or harm (such as domestic abuse); to visit someone in a care home; to accompany them to a medical appointment, or to go to the vets.
You can also leave home to attend a place of worship for individual prayer, a funeral or a related event for someone who has died.
Meeting others safely
You must not meet people socially.
However, you can exercise or meet in a public, outdoor space with people you live with, your support bubble (or as part of a childcare bubble), or with one other person – social distancing measures must be adhered to.
You must not meet socially indoors with family or friends unless they are part of your household or support bubble.
You cannot meet people in a private garden, unless you live with them or have formed a support bubble with them.
Businesses and venues
Businesses and venues which MUST close include:
- Non-essential retail, however these venues can continue to operate click-and-collect (where goods are pre-ordered and collected off the premises) and delivery services.
- Hospitality venues such as cafes, restaurants, pubs, bars and social clubs; with the exception of providing food and drink for takeaway (before 10pm), click-and-collect, drive-through or delivery.
- Accommodation such as hotels, hostels, guest houses and campsites. Except for specific circumstances, such as where these act as someone’s main residence, where they cannot return home, for homeless people, or where it is essential to stay there for work purposes
- Leisure and sports facilities such as leisure centres and gyms, swimming pools, tennis and basketball courts, golf courses, fitness and dance studios, climbing walls, archery, driving, and shooting ranges
- Entertainment venues such as theatres, concert halls, cinemas, museums and galleries, casinos etc. Indoor attractions at botanical gardens, heritage homes and landmarks must also close, though outdoor grounds of these premises can stay open
- Hair, beauty, tanning and nail salons. Tattoo parlours, spas, massage parlours, body and skin piercing services must also close. It is also prohibited to provide these services in other peoples’ homes
- Community centres and halls must close except for a limited number of exempt activities. Libraries can also remain open to provide access to IT and digital services – for example for people who do not have it at home – and for click-and-collect
- Places of worship, apart from for the purposes of independent prayer, and service broadcasting and funerals
Businesses and venues which CAN remain open include:
- Those providing essential goods or services, including: essential retail such as food shops, supermarkets, pharmacies, garden centres, hardware stores, building merchants and off-licences.
- Petrol Stations, car repair and MOT services, bicycle shops, and taxi and vehicle hire businesses.
- Banks, building societies, post offices, loan providers and money transfer businesses
- Funeral directors
- Launderettes and dry cleaners
- Medical and dental services
- Vets and pet shops
- Agricultural supplies shops
- Storage and distribution facilities
- Car parks, public toilets and motorway service areas.
- Outdoor playgrounds
- Public Services
The majority of public services will continue and you will be able to leave home to visit them. These include: the NHS and medical services like GPs and dentists, Jobcentre Plus, courts and probation, civil registrations offices, passport and visa services, services provided to victims, waste or recycling centres
Weddings, civil partnerships, and funerals
Funerals can be attended by a maximum of 30 people.
Social distancing should be maintained between people who do not live together or share a support bubble.
Weddings and civil partnership ceremonies will not be permitted to take place except where one of those getting married is seriously ill and not expected to recover (‘deathbed wedding’).
These weddings are limited to six people.
Going to work
Everyone who can work effectively from home must do so.
Where people cannot do so they should continue to travel to their workplace.
Public sector employees working in essential services, including childcare or education, should continue to go into work.
Where it is necessary to work in other people’s homes – for example, for nannies, cleaners or tradespeople – you can do so.
Education, school, college and university
Schools, colleges and universities remain open.
Universities and adult education settings should consider moving to increased levels of online learning where possible.
Childcare and children’s activities
Early years settings and childminders remain open, and you can continue to use these settings as normal
Parents are able to form a childcare bubble with one other household for the purposes of informal childcare, where the child is 13 or under
Some households will also be able to benefit from being in a support bubble, which allows single adult households to join another household
Protecting people more at risk from coronavirus
If you are over 60 or clinically vulnerable, you could be at higher risk of severe illness from coronavirus.
You should be especially careful to follow the rules and minimise your contacts with others
The government is advising the clinically extremely vulnerable to work from home.
You are encouraged to stay at home as much as possible, but are encouraged to go outside for exercise
Visiting relatives in care homes
Relatives will be permitted to visit loved ones in care homes either through a window or in an outside setting
International travel is banned, unless for work, education or other legally permitted reasons.
You can still travel to work where this cannot be done from home; to education and for caring responsibilities; to visit those in your support bubble – or your childcare bubble for childcare; to go to hospital, GP and other medical appointments or visits where you have had an accident or are concerned about your health; to buy goods or services from premises that are open, including essential retail; to spend time or exercise outdoors; to attend the care and exercise of a pet, or veterinary services
UK residents currently abroad do not need to return home immediately. However, they should check with their airline or travel operator on arrangements for returning.
Staying away from home overnight
Overnight stays and holidays away from primary residences will not be allowed.
This includes staying in a second home or caravan, or staying with anyone you do not live with or are in a support bubble with.
If you were already on holiday, you should return to your home as soon as practical and comply with the ‘stay at home’ requirements in your holiday accommodation in the meantime.
You can still move home. People outside your household or support bubble should not help with moving house unless absolutely necessary.
Estate and letting agents and removals firms can continue to work and people looking to move home can continue to undertake viewings.
Workers in any part of the UK can retain their job, even if their employer cannot afford to pay them, and be paid at least 80 percent of their salary up to £2,500 a month.