CORONAVIRUS: GUIDANCE FOR BUSINESSES, EMPLOYERS AND EMPLOYEES (Updated 25/02/21)
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We are currently in a national lockdown. This means that only a select number of businesses are currently able to remain open, including essential retail and services (i.e banks, estate agents). Non-essential businesses are able to offer click & collect and delivery services.
CLICK HERE to read full guidance around current national restrictions.
Shops, hairdressers, gyms and outdoor hospitality will reopen on 12 April in England if strict conditions are met, under plans being set out by the PM.
As part of the first step of the plan for easing lockdown in England:
- From 8 March – All schools will open with outdoor after-school sports and activities allowed. Recreation in an outdoor public spaces – such as a park – will be allowed between two people, meaning they would be allowed to sit down for a coffee, drink or picnic
- From 29 March – Outdoor gatherings of either six people or two households will be allowed. It is understood this will include gatherings in private gardens. Outdoor sports facilities such as tennis or basketball courts will reopen and organised sport, such as grassroots football, will also return
The second step comes from 12 April would see major parts of the economy permitted to reopen:
- Non-essential retail opens, hairdressers and other beauty and public buildings like libraries and museums
- Outdoor settings like alcohol takeaways, beer gardens and other outdoor hospitality (no curfew or requirement to eat a substantial meal alongside alcohol), zoos and theme parks
- Indoor leisure like swimming pools and gyms
- Self-contained holiday accommodation, such as self-catering lets and camp sites
But wider social contact rules will continue to apply in all settings – meaning no indoor mixing between different households will be allowed. Funerals continue with up to 30 people, and weddings with up to 15 guests.
The third step will come from 17 May – if the data allows – and will see the “rule of six” abolished for outdoor gatherings, replaced with a limit of 30 people:
- Two households can mix indoors – with the rule of six applied in hospitality settings like pubs and restaurants
- Cinemas, hotels, performances and sporting events reopen – though social distancing remains
- Up to 10,000 spectators can attend the very largest outdoor seated venues like football stadiums
Up to 30 people will be able to attend weddings, receptions, funerals and wakes.
The fourth step from 21 June will potentially see all legal limits on social contact removed, with the final closed sectors of the economy reopened – such as nightclubs.
The government hopes that – from this date – restrictions on weddings and funerals will also be abolished.
The four conditions that must be met at each phase of lockdown easing are:
- The coronavirus vaccine programme continues to go to plan
- Evidence shows vaccines are sufficiently reducing the number of people dying with the virus or needing hospital treatment
- Infection rates do not risk a surge in hospital admissions
- New variants of the virus do not fundamentally change the risk of lifting restrictions
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