United Kingdom

New local lockdown rules expected in North East England - and the current restrictions across UK

Boris Johnson has ordered swathes of England back into partial lockdown in a bid to stop a second wave of coronavirus. 

New rules have also been introduced for the whole country that ban people socialising in groups of more than six.

Birmingham, Greater Manchester and Bolton are among the areas under local lockdown.  On Thursday, September 17, ministers are expected to impose restrictions on parts of the North East too. 

The Newcastle city council leader Nick Forbes said "additional, temporary" measures were being planned to prevent another full lockdown.

These could include a 10pm curfew on pubs, restaurants and other licensed premises, and people could be banned from socialising with anyone outside their household

Other restrictions expected to be announced but not yet confirmed include people being told not to go on holiday with different households and spectators advised not to attend sporting venues.

Care home visits will be restricted to essential visitors, and people will be advised to avoid public transport at peak times except for essential journeys, and to avoid car-shares.

The restrictions will reportedly apply to Newcastle, Northumberland, North Tyneside, South Tyneside, Gateshead, County Durham and Sunderland - which have all seen rises in cases, according to the latest weekly rates.

Here's everything we know about the restrictions.

Which areas are in local lockdown and what are the rules?

Birmingham

Includes: Solihull and Sandwell boroughs

Households in Birmingham, Sandwell and Solihull have been banned from meeting each other from Tuesday September 15.

From September 15 you must not:

Your household is defined as the people you live with and any support bubble. A support bubble is where a household with one adult joins with another household. Households within a bubble can still visit each other, stay overnight and visit public places together.

It comes as cases in Birmingham have increased rapidly.

According to NHS Digital data, the latest seven-day rate for Birmingham to September 8 showed 78.2 cases per 100,000 with 892 cases over the period - among the highest in the city since April.

Greater Manchester

Includes: City of Manchester, Trafford, Oldham, Bury, Bolton, Tameside, Rochdale and Salford.

In Wigan and Stockport, restrictions have now been eased to align with the rest of the country.

The following restrictions - in addition to those below - apply to Bolton:

You must not:

You should not:

  • Socialise with people you do not live with in other indoor public venues – such as pubs, restaurants and cafes (all of which are now takeaway-only in Bolton), shops, places of worship, community centres, leisure and entertainment venues, or visitor attractions
  • You may attend these venues with people you live with (or are in a support bubble with), but should avoid interaction with individuals or groups from other households. If you run such a business or organise events on their premises, you should take steps to ensure people do not interact with people they do not live with, in line with Covid-19 secure guidance
  • Visit friends or family in care homes, other than in exceptional circumstances. Care homes should make sure that they restrict visits to these circumstances. Restrictions are tightest in this regard in Bolton

The following cannot reopen or resume:

Trafford will remain under its existing coronavirus restrictions “following a significant change in the level of infection rates over the last few days”, Matt Hancock, the Health Secretary, said on September 2 following an about-turn by the Government.

Lancashire

Includes: Blackburn, Pendle and Preston.

In Rossendale, Darwen East, Darwen South, Darwen West, Blackburn South East, Ewood, Livesey with Pleasington, and Mill Hill & Moorgate, restrictions have been eased to align with the rest of the country.

You must not:

These specific restrictions around social gatherings between different households were lifted in Burnley and Hyndburn on September 2.

Businesses that opened elsewhere on August 15, such as bowling alleys, are now allowed to open in Burnley.

You should not:

  • Socialise with people you do not live with in other indoor public venues – such as pubs, restaurants, cafes, shops, places of worship, community centres, leisure and entertainment venues, or visitor attractions. You may attend these venues with people you live with (or are in a support bubble with), but should avoid interaction with individuals or groups from other households. If you run such a business or organise events on their premises, you should take steps to ensure people do not interact with people they do not live with, in line with Covid-19 secure guidance
  • Visit friends or family in care homes, other than in exceptional circumstances. Care homes should restrict visits to these circumstances

The following cannot reopen or resume:

In Blackburn the following must also remain closed:

Leicester

Includes: Leicester City

You must not:

Some business were able to reopen in Leicester from Tuesday, September 15, and will now be subject to the same business restrictions as the majority of England.

They were: 

Guidance will be updated and socially distanced indoor performances will be able to resume, and remaining restrictions on certain close contact services (treatments on the face, such as eyebrow threading or make-up application) will be lifted.

The next review of Leicester's lockdown rules is expected on September 24.

What if they want to visit me?

The same rule applies. Even if you live outside the lockdown zone, they are not allowed to come to your home. 

I live in one of these areas. Can I see my family and friends? 

People living in the lockdown zones can meet in outdoor public spaces in groups of up to six people. They will still be required to socially distance. 

Can I go to work? 

There is no restriction on travelling to and from the office. 

Should I cancel my wedding? 

Weddings and civil partnership ceremonies are still permitted, with up to 30 people able to attend. However, large receptions or parties afterwards should not go ahead. People can also travel in and out of lockdown zones to attend weddings. 

Funerals of the same size can also take place. 

Read more: The latest wedding rules

Can I go to a place of worship? 

You may attend a mosque, church, synagogue, temple or other place or worship, but you should socially distance from people outside of your household. Maintain a distance of 2m, or 1m if you are wearing a mask.

If possible, prayer or religious services should take place outdoors.

Glasgow, East Renfrewshire and West Dunbartonshire

The rules: People in the Glasgow City, East Renfrewshire and West Dunbartonshire local authority areas should not meet with people from other households in indoor household settings, whether in these areas or elsewhere. Members of different households can continue to meet outdoors, including in gardens, and in hospitality settings.

Anyone living in this area who has been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19 should isolate for 14 days. This quarantine extends to everyone in their household group.

Indoor visits to hospitals and care homes are limited to essential visits only. Outdoor visits to care homes are permitted by up to three individuals at a time from no more than two households.

Northern Ireland

The rules: Limits are in place on indoor and outdoor gatherings. Health Minister Robin Swann said that the number of people who could meet in groups outdoors was now 15, down from 30, following a rise in cases.

Groups meeting indoors is now limited to six people from two households, down from 10 people, while there will be additional police enforcement in affected areas.

Wales

Restrictions have been reimposed in Caerphilly, Wales, following a spike in Covid-19 cases. Measures have also been extended to Rhondda Cynon Taf from September 17.

The rules: People will not be allowed to leave or enter the county area without a "reasonable excuse", people over 11 must wear face coverings in shops and people will only be allowed to meet outdoors.

Extended households will also be temporarily suspended.

How are the restrictions enforced?

The police will be able to take action against those that break these rules, including asking people to disperse and issuing £100 fixed penalty notices. For repeat offenders, these fines can increase up to £3,200

People aged 18 or over can be fined:

Should I shield?

The Government advice for vulnerable people to shield ended on August 1, but clinically extremely vulnerable people in Leicester and Blackburn are still being advised to shield.

But if cases of the virus return to dangerous levels up to 4.5 million people deemed to be at risk of serious illness from Covid-19 will be asked to stay at home or given tailored advice on protecting themselves.

Can I travel in the lockdown areas?

You should try not to share a car with those outside your household or social bubble. If you need to, the Government advises you to:

Read more: Can I travel with friends, and stay overnight with family?

Can I visit my family in one of the lockdown areas?

No. Two households are no longer permitted to meet at home or in a private garden, except where they have formed a support bubble.

You should not travel outside of your area to meet people other than those in your support bubble, in their homes or gardens, or indoor public places.

You can only go on holiday outside of your area with people you live with (or have formed a support bubble with).

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