Added on: 9th September, 2020 by O1
Prime Minister Boris Johnson says "We must act" to stop rise in coronavirus cases in England, as he details new "rule of six" restrictions
It comes as the UK reported another 2,659 confirmed coronavirus cases, the fourth day of more than 2,000 cases.
"I want to be absolutely clear, these measures are not another national lockdown. The whole point of them is to avoid a second national lockdown," Mr Johnson said.
From Monday, people in England must not meet socially in groups of more than 6 and if you do, you will be breaking the law.
This will apply in any setting, indoors or outdoors, at home or in the pub.
The ban will be set out in law and it will be enforced by the police anyone breaking the rules risks being dispersed, fined and possibly arrested.
The new measure replaces both the existing ban on gatherings of more than 30 and the current guidance on allowing 2 households to meet indoors.
COVID Secure venues like places of worship, gyms, restaurants and hospitality venues can still hold more than 6 people in total. Within those venues however, there must not be individual groups larger than 6, and groups must not mix socially or form larger groups.
Education and work settings are unaffected, COVID Secure weddings and funerals can go ahead, up to a limit of 30 people, and organised sport will still be able to proceed.
The government has said that in the future:
Premises and venues where people meet socially will be legally required to request the contact details of a member of every party, record and retain these details for 21 days, and provide them to NHS Test & Trace without delay when required.
Local authorities will be supported to make further and faster use of their powers to close venues that are breaking the rules and pose a risk to public health.
Fines will be levied against hospitality venues that fail to ensure their premises remain COVID Secure.
The government will boost the enforcement capacity of local authorities by introducing COVID Secure Marshalls to help ensure social distancing in town and city centres, and by setting up a register of Environmental Health Officers that local authorities can draw upon for support.
the opening hours of some premises will also be restricted, initially in some local areas.
The Prime Minister also encouraged people to remember the basics:
First, wash your hands, regularly and for 20 seconds.
Second, wear a face covering over your mouth and nose if you are in an enclosed space and in close contact with people you dont normally meet. Face coverings do make it harder for the virus to spread.
Third, make space. Always stay 2 metres away from people you dont live with or 1 metre with extra precautions, like extra ventilation, screens, or face coverings.