What are the new measures?
From Thursday 5 November, the UK Government has brought in new national restrictions to help combat the spread of COVID-19. This means:
- People are required to stay at home, except for specific purposes
- You are not allowed to gather with people you do not live with, unless the gathering is covered within a list of specific exceptions.
- The closure of certain businesses.
A number of businesses and sectors will also change the way in which they operate. For example, restaurants and bars must close but can provide a takeaway service
How long will the new restrictions last?
The restrictions are due to be reviewed by Parliament on 2 December.
What are the restrictions on households?
- You must not socialise with anybody you do not live with, or have formed a support bubble with, in any indoor setting or private garden.
- You can only meet one person from another household outdoors.
- Exemptions – those with children under school age, as well as those who need round-the-clock care, such as those with severe disabilities, who are with their parents will not count towards the limit on two people meeting outside.
People should only come inside your home for specific purposes:
- Where everyone in the gathering lives together or is in the same support bubble
- To attend a birth at the mother’s request
- To visit a person who is dying – the visitor can be someone the dying person lives with, a close family member, friend or, if none of those is visiting, anyone else
- To fulfil a legal obligation
- For work purposes, or the provision of voluntary or charitable services
- For the purposes of education or training
- For the purposes of childcare provided by a registered provider
- For the purposes of childcare for children under the age of 14 or vulnerable adults, when it is necessary for caring purposes
- To provide emergency assistance
- To enable one or more persons in the gathering to avoid injury or illness or to escape a risk of harm
- To facilitate a house move
- To provide care or assistance to a vulnerable person
- To continue existing arrangements for access to, and contact between, parents and children where the children do not live in the same household as their parents, or one of their parents
For what reasons can I leave my home?
There are a number of exceptions to the stay at home guidance. These include:
- For childcare or education
- For work - if your place of work remains open and/or your role can not be carried out from home.
- For daily exercise or to visit a public place – this can be with the people you live with, your support bubble, or, if on your own, with one person from another household. Children under school age, as well as those who need round-the-clock, who are with their parents/guardian will not count towards the limit on two people.
- For medical reasons, appointments and emergencies – this includes avoiding or escaping the risk of injury or harm, such as domestic abuse.
- To visit members of your support bubble or provide care for vulnerable people, or to volunteer.
Can I visit a care home?
You should not visit friends or family in care homes, other than in exceptional circumstances. An example would include someone receiving end-of-life care. Care homes should restrict visits to these circumstances.
Can I move home?
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.
Follow the national guidance on moving home safely, which includes advice on social distancing and wearing a face covering.
What should I do if I was previously shielding?
The guidance, which those who are defined on medical grounds as clinically extremely vulnerable to coronavirus are strongly urged to follow, includes:
- Stay at home as much as possible, except to exercise or to attend essential health appointments
- Do not go to shops or pharmacies – encourage others to collect and deliver food and medication. Travel only where essential
- Work from home, and if you can’t do your job from home, you are advised not to work during this period. You may be eligible for Statutory Sick Pay, Employment Support Allowance or Universal Credit.
- Like everyone, clinically extremely vulnerable individuals may meet up with one other person from outside their household or support bubble in an outdoor public place – but remain two metres apart.
What businesses will close?
- All non-essential retail must close. However, essential stores such as supermarkets can continue to sell non-essential items. Retail that must close includes car showrooms, travel agents, betting shops and tobacco and vape shops.
- Indoor and outdoor leisure and sport facilities. This includes bowling alleys, leisure centres, gyms, golf courses and driving ranges, dance studios, stables and riding facilities, soft play centres, climbing walls and climbing centres.
- Entertainment venues such as theatres, concert halls, cinemas, museums and galleries, casinos, adult gaming centres and arcades, bingo halls, bowling alleys, concert halls, botanical gardens, zoos and other animal attractions.
- Personal care facilities. These include hair, beauty and nail salons, tattoo parlours, spas, massage parlours, body and skin piercing services, non-medical acupuncture and tanning salons.
- All driving lessons and driving tests are suspended.
What businesses will remain open or offer a changed service?
- Food shops, supermarkets, garden centres and certain other retailers providing essential goods and services can stay open but will be following COVID-secure guidelines.
- Non-essential retail can offer delivery and click-and-collect services.
- Service providers, such as Dog Groomers, can remain open but customers must consider how they get their pet to and from the business. This could be via a pick up and drop off service. Alternatively, different members of a household could pick up and drop off the pet as part of their daily exercise.
- Tradespeople can continue to work in homes but must follow COVID-secure guidelines.
- Hospitality venues such as restaurants, bars and pubs can provide takeaway and delivery services.
- Hotels, hostels and other accommodation should only open for those who have to travel for work purposes and for limited other reasons.
Can I travel?
You cannot travel overseas or within the UK, unless for work, education or other legally permitted reasons. You should try to keep all travel to a minimum.
Where travel is necessary, people are encouraged to walk or cycle rather than use public transport.
You can still travel for these reasons:
- For caring responsibilities
- To visit people in your support bubble
- For childcare purposes
- To medical appointments or if you are concerned about your health
- To buy goods from essential retailers
- To spend time or to exercise outdoors – this should be done locally wherever possible
- To care for or exercise a pet or get veterinary services
Can I use public transport?
You should follow all relevant transport guidance when making a journey on public transport. Try to plan your journey to avoid peak times wherever possible.
You must wear a face covering on public transport, taxis and private hire vehicles and in substantially enclosed areas of transport hubs in England (as well as other indoor premises).
You will be breaking the law if you fail to do so and could be fined. Some people do not have to wear a face covering including for age, health or disability reasons.
Can I attend a support group?
Formally organised support groups such as therapy groups (not to be confused with a support bubble) can continue to meet but are limited to 15 people in attendance. This includes, but is not limited to, support to victims of crime, people in drug and alcohol recovery, new parents and guardians, people with long-term illnesses, people facing issues relating to their sexuality or gender, and those who have suffered bereavement, and vulnerable young people, including for them to meet young workers
Will parent and child groups continue?
Parent and child groups can continue where they provide support to parents and/or children. Children under five will not be counted towards the 15-person limit for the group sessions.
Can weddings and civil partnerships go ahead?
Marriages and civil partnerships cannot take place until further notice, effective from 5 November 2020.
How many people can attend a funeral?
- a limit of 30 people attending a funeral – anyone working is not included in this number
- a limit of 15 people attending a linked religious, belief-based or ceremonial event in a COVID-19 secure venue or public outdoor place – anyone working is not included in this number
Can children’s sports clubs continue?
Most organised children’s sport outside of school activity will have to cease (see below for information on non-elite competitive sports). However, there are allowances for childcare:
- Parents can continue to use these facilities where reasonably necessary to enable parents to work, seek work, attending training or education, or for respite care.
- Sporting and physical activity is also permitted as part of other supervised activities for children (such as wraparound care), where it is necessary to enable parents or careers to work, seek work, attending training or education, or for respite care.
Can competitive sports continue?
All non-elite sport is suspended during the lockdown period. This includes:
- All fixtures and training for Steps 3-6 of the National League System
- All fixtures and training for Tiers 3-7 of the Women’s Football Pyramid
- All fixtures and training for the Regional NLS Feeder Leagues
- All fixtures and training for The Barclays FA WSL Academy League
- All fixtures and training for FA Girls Regional Talent Clubs
- All fixtures and training for indoor and outdoor youth and adult grassroots football.