Boris Johnson has confirmed the introduction of a tighter three-tier system once England’s second national lockdown lifts on Wednesday December 2.
While admitting his hope that the many vaccine-related developments will improve things in the long term, Johnson emphasised the importance of sticking to these new rules when it comes to controlling the spread of Covid-19.
Many establishments – such as pubs, bars, hairdressers, beauty treatments, gyms, theatres, cinemas and non-essential shops – will be allowed to reopen across the UK, depending on what tier their region is in.
The “rule of six” will also return, rolled out differently across different tiers. Here’s a breakdown of the latest restrictions.
What places will be allowed to reopen on 2 December?
Gyms – as well as the wider leisure sector – will be reopening as soon as restrictions lift next week, Johnson has confirmed.
Beauty salons and hairdressers are also reopening from 2 December.
When it comes to eating and drinking out, pubs and restaurants are set to reopen, subject to what tier the establishment is in.
Regions in tier 1 will be allowed to go out and socialise inside with table service only, with the “rule of six” returning for indoor and outdoor socialising.
Pubs and restaurants in tier 2 will only be open if serving “substantial meals”, and those meeting people from outside their household will have to do so outdoors in a group of six people maximum. In tier 3, only takeaways and deliveries will be available.
Curfew for pubs, bars and restaurants will also be extended from 10pm to 11pm so that visitors can enjoy their drinks and food for an hour longer. Last orders will be at 10pm, closing time will be at 11pm.
Non-essential shops are also due to reopen as the English national lockdown lifts, in time for the Christmas shopping period. In the previous tiered system these services operated as normal but with various social distancing and sanitation processes in place.
In tier 1, entertainment venues – such as cinemas, theatres, casinos and bowling alleys – can also reopen.
Will we be allowed to visit family and friends?
If you are in tier 1, you can see friends and family within a “rule of six”, while in tier 2 you are limited to socialising outdoors with a maximum of six people.
Regions in tier 3 will only be permitted to socialise with members of their own household inside or with others in outdoor spaces in groups of six or less.
Overnight stays will be allowed within the “rule of six” in tier 1, and only allowed within support bubbles in tier 2, and will not be permitted outside of the local area in tier 3 except for work or education.
What tier is my area in?
People can find out which alert level their area falls under using the postcode search available on the government website. You can also refer to a full list here.
The NHS Covid 19 app will also be updated and show which local alert level applies in which area.