At midnight, measures came into effect that tightened social gatherings in Greater Manchester and other parts of the north. Prohibition of residents from separate households from meeting indoors.
Health Minister Matt Hancock made the sudden announcement last night (July 30), saying that people in certain areas should no longer be gathered due to an increase in COVID-19 cases in those regions.
The areas to which the ban applies are:
- Greater Manchester area
- Blackburn with Darwen
- Leicester City
The new guidelines, which were enforced in Greater Manchester after discussions with local mayor Andy Burnham, appear to be reviewed weekly.
Local authorities and police will have the power to enforce the rules as long as they remain in effect, and anyone who violates them can be fined £ 100.
The news about the indoor ban was initially published in short intervals on Twitter with little context, so that the residents were confused as to whether they were still allowed to go to work, enter shops or visit pubs and restaurants.
But more details were released this morning.
Can I meet others in a bar, restaurant, cafe, or garden?
The new rules stipulate that no two households may meet indoors.
According to the latest information, cafes, bars, pubs and restaurants remain open – but no two households should visit these public places together.
Different households are also not allowed to interfere in gardens.
However, people can still meet with their “support bubbles”.
Anyone living alone or with dependent children (under the age of 18) may be in a support bubble with another household.
Can i go to work
Nothing has changed at work.
The government said: "People living inside and outside of this area can continue to enter and exit for work," but the social distance guidelines must be followed.
I protect; I have to keep going
The shielding directive was originally intended to end on August 1.
However, the government has now said that people in "Blackburn with Darwen in the North West and other locally affected areas across England where protection continues" should continue to offer protection.
Can funerals and weddings still take place in Manchester?
This type of gathering can continue.
No more than 30 people should attend a wedding or funeral.
For weddings, after the ceremony, each community should “include no more than two households in one place or outdoors up to six people from different households”.
Can I share a car with people outside my home?
The government does not recommend this.
However, if car sharing is required, drivers should thoroughly clean their vehicles before and after each trip, open the windows, avoid carrying different passengers, and ensure that everyone wears face masks.
Can I still visit a place of worship?
This is allowed, but you need to distance yourself socially from people outside of your household and wear a face mask if you are closer than 2 m.
The health minister said these measures were taken “with a heavy heart”.
"We are constantly looking for the latest data on the spread of the corona virus, and unfortunately we have noticed an increasing transmission rate in parts of Northern England," said Hancock.
“We worked with local leaders in the region and today I chaired a session of the Local Action Gold Committee. Based on the data, we decided that in Greater Manchester, parts of West Yorkshire and East Lancashire, we need to take immediate action to ensure people's safety.
Andy Burnham said: “The picture in Greater Manchester has changed in the past 7 days.
"We now have a rising rate in 9 out of 10 counties.
"We decided that something had to be done."
He also asked residents to protect each other by respecting the new requirements.
"They are checked weekly. That means the more we stick to them, the faster they will be removed, ”commented the mayor.
Read more about the update guidelines on-line.