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New lockdown measures for England as COVID-19 alert level rises again. Published Date: 22/09/2020

The Prime Minister, Boris Johnson has addressed the House of Commons, announcing new measures to address the pandemic and the rate of infection which is currently doubling every 7-10 days.

Measures include a 10pm curfew for pubs, bars and restaurants, increased mandatory requirements for face coverings (including now for taxi and private hire users), tightening the 'Rule of 6' and increasing sanctions for breaches. The measures are aimed at slowing the spread of the virus, and the PM warned that further measures will be considered if necessary.

The announcements by the PM were made in his address to the House of Commons at 12.30pm today and will be confirmed in a televised address to the nation this evening at 8.00pm.

The measures in summary outlined by Boris Johnson:

  1. Work from home where possible;  Those who cannot, should still go to work.
  2. Table service only at pubs, bar and restaurants (from Thursday);
  3. All hospitalitymust close at 10pm - closing time (not simply last orders)(from Thursday);
  4. Extend mandatory face-coverings to staff in retail, all users of taxis/phv vehicles and staff and customers in indoor hospitality except when seated at tables to eat or drink (indication is that this will be from midnight tonight - Wednesday, and will be an extension of existing Regulations, enforceable by the Police);
  5. Retail, leisure and tourism COVID safe guidelines become legal obligations.
  6. Businesses can be fined and could be closed if breach rules;
  7. Tighten up rule of 6: from Monday a maximum of 15 people can attend wedding ceremonies and receptions, up to 30 can still attend funerals;
  8. Rule of 6 extended to all adult indoor team sports.
  9. No opening of business conferences, exhibitions and large sporting events on 1 October as hoped;
  10. Rules enforced by tighter penalties: £10,000 fine can be applied to businesses who break rules;
  11. Penalty for not wearing face or breaking rule of 6 doubled to £200 for 1st offence;
  12. Greater funding for police and local authorties to enforce and options to call in military support;

The PM stated that 30 million people are currently under local restrictions and that local interventions will continue.   He stated that on scientific advice, those previously shielding would not need now to shield unless in a local lockdown area.

The PM stated that 'for the time being, this virus is a fact of our lives', and advised that no effort will be spared in developing a vaccine, treatments and new methods of mass testing. He stressed that the Government reserves the right to impose 'significantly greater restrictions... if necessary', pointing out that this will be needed if the latest measures do not have the right effect and if behaviours do not change.

The PM advised that the measures outlined apply in England, but that devolved administrations will be taking similar steps. 


Read the PM's Statement in full.