COVID-19 national restrictions from 5th November 2020

Following rises in transmission of COVID-19 across the country, the Government has announced new rules. These national restrictions have replaced the Local Covid Alert Level measures.
National COVID-19 restrictions from 5th November

From 5th November up to, and including, Wednesday 2nd December 2020, we must:

  1. Stay at home, except for specific purposes.
  2. Avoid meeting people we do not live with, except for specific purposes.
  3. Close certain businesses and venues.

At the end of this period the country will return to a regional approach, based on the latest data. These measures will be underpinned by law. Police and other authorities will have powers to give fines and break up gatherings.

You can help to protect your friends and family by downloading the NHS COVID-19 App to keep updated on the latest guidance.

There is separate guidance for households with a possible or confirmed coronavirus infection.

1. Stay at home

You must not leave or be outside your home except for specific purposes. A specific purpose includes:

Work and volunteering

You can leave home for work purposes, or to provide voluntary or charitable services, where you cannot do this from home.

Essential activities

You can leave home to buy things at shops such as food or medicine, or to collect items ordered through click-and-collect or as a takeaway. Also to obtain or deposit money from a bank or post office or to access critical public services.

Fulfilling legal obligations

You may also leave home to fulfil legal obligations, or to carry out activities related to buying, selling, letting or renting a residential property.

Education and childcare

You can leave home for education or training (formal provision, not extracurricular classes), registered childcare and supervised activities for children that are necessary to allow parents/carers to work, seek work, or undertake education or training. Parents/carers can take their children to school, and people can continue existing arrangements for contact between parents and children where they live apart.

Meeting others and care

You can leave home to visit people in your support bubble, or to provide informal childcare for children aged 13 and under as part of a childcare bubble. Also to provide care for vulnerable people, to provide emergency assistance, attend a support group (of up to 15 people), or for respite care where that care is being provided to a vulnerable person or a person with a disability, or is a short break in respect of a looked after child. People can also exercise outdoors or visit an outdoor public place.

Medical reasons, harm and compassionate visits

You can leave home for any medical reason, including to get a COVID-19 test, for medical appointments and emergencies, to be with someone who is giving birth, to avoid injury or illness or to escape risk of harm (such as domestic abuse), or to attend veterinary services for advice or treatment.

You can also leave home to visit someone who is dying or someone in a care home (if permitted under care home guidance), hospice, or hospital, or to accompany them to a medical appointment.

Places of worship and burial grounds

You can leave home to attend a place of worship for individual prayer, a funeral or a related event for someone who has died, to visit a burial ground or a remembrance garden, or to attend a deathbed wedding.

A list of what constitutes a ‘reasonable excuse’ for leaving home can be found in the regulations.

2. Meeting others safely

You can only exercise or meet in a public, outdoors space with people you live with, your support bubble (or as part of a childcare bubble), or with one other person.

You should minimise time spent outside your home. When around other people, stay 2 metres apart from anyone not in your household - meaning the people you live with - or your support bubble. Where this is not possible, stay 1 metre apart with extra precautions (e.g. wearing a face covering).

You must not meet socially indoors with family or friends unless they are part of your household or support bubble.

support bubble is where a household with one adult joins with another household. Households in that support bubble can still visit each other, stay overnight in each other’s households, and visit outdoor public places together.

You can exercise or visit a public outdoor space:

  • by yourself
  • with the people you live with
  • with your support bubble
  • or, when on your own, one person from another household.

Children under 5, and up to two carers for a person with a disability who needs continuous care, are not counted towards the gatherings limit on two or more people meeting outside.

Public outdoor places include:

  • neighbourhood streets, parks, beaches, and the countryside
  • public gardens and grounds (whether or not you pay to enter them)
  • allotments
  • outdoor playgrounds.

You cannot meet people in a private garden, unless you live with them or have formed a support bubble with them.  Face coverings are required by law to be worn in many indoor settings, such as shops or places of worship where these remain open, and on public transport.

Larger groups

There are still circumstances in which you are allowed to meet others in larger groups outside your household or support bubble, but this should not be for socialising and only for permitted purposes. A full list of these circumstances can be found in the regulations.

3. Businesses and venues

Those businesses and venues which provide essential goods and follow COVID-19 secure guidelines are permitted to stay open, including:

  • Essential retail such as food shops, supermarkets, pharmacies, garden centres, hardware stores, building merchants and off-licences.
  • Petrol Stations, car repair and MOT services, bicycle shops, and taxi and vehicle hire businesses.
  • Banks, building societies, post offices, short-term loan providers and money transfer businesses
  • Funeral directors
  • Laundrettes and dry cleaners
  • Medical and dental services
  • Car parks, public toilets and motorway service areas.

Public Services

The majority of public services will continue, including the NHS and medical services like GPs, dentists and pharmacies. It is vital that anyone who needs any kind of medical care comes forward to seek help.

Also Jobcentre Plus sites, courts, probation and victims’ services; Civil Registrations Offices, Passport and Visa Services; Waste or Recycling Centres.

4. Weddings, civil partnerships and funerals

Weddings and civil partnership ceremonies will not be permitted to take place except where one of those getting married is seriously ill and not expected to recover (‘deathbed wedding’). These weddings are limited to 6 people.

Funerals can be attended by a maximum of 30 people. Linked funeral ceremonial events such as stone settings and ash scatterings can also continue with up to 15 people in attendance. Anyone working is not counted in the 15 or 30 person limit. Social distancing should be maintained between people who do not live together or share a support bubble.

5. Going to work

Everyone who can work effectively from home should do so. Where people cannot do so - including, but not limited to, people who work in critical national infrastructure, construction, or manufacturing - they should continue to travel to their workplace. Public sector employees working in essential services, including childcare or education, should continue to go into work.

Where it is necessary to work in other people’s homes, such as if you are a cleaner, you can do so. Otherwise, you should avoid meeting for work in a private home or garden.

6. Education, school, college and university

Schools, colleges and universities remain open. Also core educational facilities like early years settings and vocational training centres. Home-schooled pupils can still access education and training in community settings where needed.

The Government has published guidance advising universities on re-opening, including moving to increased levels of online learning where possible. If you live at university, you should not move back and forward between your permanent home and student home during term time. You should only return home at the end of term.

7. Visiting relatives in care homes

On 6th November Bradford Council announced that it was sending new guidance to care homes across the district to support them to allow close family and friends to visit residents safely. The guidance firstly covers outdoors visiting. Guidance on visiting inside care homes will follow shortly.

The guidance will offer advice on how care homes can safely carry out alternative forms of visit such as the creation of visiting pods, garden visiting, meetings through windows or Perspex barriers and drive-through visits. It is hoped that the new guidance will mean care home residents will get to meet loved ones more often – initially in outdoor locations.

Every care home is different in terms of its facilities, landscape and the care it offers and these additional visiting options will only take place if appropriate risk assessments are carried out to ensure they keep all residents safe. This also means it is up to each care home to decide what it can offer friends and family and it may take time to install the infrastructure and systems needed to be able to offer visits safely.

The Government has published national guidance on care home visits during this period of national restrictions.

8. Travel

If you need to travel, try to walk or cycle if possible. Plan ahead and avoid busy times and routes on public transport. Follow the safer travel guidance, including the rules on wearing face coverings and advice on car sharing.

Avoid travelling if you can, unless for work, education or other legally permitted reasons such as:  

  • travelling to work if you cannot work from home or to education or caring responsibilities
  • to visit those in your support bubble - or your childcare bubble for childcare
  • hospital, GP and other medical appointments or visits where you have had an accident or are concerned about your health
  • to buy goods or services from premises that are open, including essential retail.

If you need to travel overseas before 2nd December (and are legally permitted to do so), even if you are returning to a place you’ve visited before, you should look at the rules in place at your destination and the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) travel advice.

Read more on the latest Government guidelines

Remember

  • To take care of yourself. GPs, hospitals and other services are #StillHereToHelp
  • If you need medical advice please access NHS 111 online at: www.111.nhs.uk or, if you are not online, phone: 111.
  • The latest Coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance and announcements are available on the Government’s website.
  • Find out how to isolate your household, if you need to, at: nhs.uk/coronavirus
  • A range of easy read leaflets and webpages are available from Bradford council's website, covering coronavirus, social distancing and going for a test. For more, visit the Help pages for people with learning difficulties.

Protecting people more at risk from coronavirus

If you are over 60 or clinically vulnerable, you could be at higher risk of severe illness from coronavirus.

You:

  • should be especially careful to follow the rules and minimise your contacts with others
  • should continue to wash your hands carefully and more frequently than usual and maintain thorough cleaning of frequently touched areas in your home and/or workspace.

Clinically vulnerable people are those who are:

  • pregnant
  • aged 70 or over (regardless of medical conditions)
  • under 70 with an underlying health condition listed below (that is, anyone instructed to get a flu jab each year on medical grounds):
    • chronic (long-term) mild to moderate respiratory diseases, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema or bronchitis
    • chronic heart disease, such as heart failure
    • chronic kidney disease and chronic liver disease, such as hepatitis
    • chronic neurological conditions, such as Parkinson’s disease, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis (MS) or cerebral palsy
    • diabetes and problems with the spleen
    • a weakened immune system as the result of certain conditions or medicines they are taking (such as steroid tablets)
    • being seriously overweight (a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or above).

Additional advice for those clinically extremely vulnerable

There is another group of people who are defined as clinically extremely vulnerable to coronavirus on medical grounds – those with specific serious health conditions. Clinically extremely vulnerable people are advised to stay at home as much as possible, except to go outdoors for exercise or to attend essential health appointments. Here is the Government’s full guidance.

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