Nine lockdown rules that have changed – and you may be following unnecessarily

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As England is plunged back into a second national shutdown the government set out a whopping 32 pages of rules.

Effective from today and running until December 2, England is under lockdown to stop the spread of coronavirus.

The second lockdown was backed overwhelmingly by MPs – although there were some Tory rebels suggesting that a third shut down will be harder to achieve.

But in the meantime, households in England must now adhere to strict rules or face fines.

Pubs and non-essential shops have been shut, households can’t mix and travelling has been banned.

But there are some lesser known rules and differences to previous shut downs that you might not be aware of, Birmingham Livereports.

So you might as well have a read and check you aren't following any of the older, stricter rules unnecessarily.

Seeing friends or family

This time around you can meet up with one other person outside your household in a public place.

You can see a friend or loved one for ‘recreational purposes’ such as exercise, a walk in a park or even a distanced picnic.

But meeting in private gardens is not allowed, and golf and tennis has also been banned.

Appointments

Rubbish tips reported huge queues during the first lockdown but they are open again throughout this shutdown.

And you can still view a potential home if you are looking to move.

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Medical appointments can continue and you can provide respite care for vulnerable people.

Deathbed visits are allowed by close family members and friends.

Schools

Schools have remained open this time – but children have to wear facemasks in corridors and in communal areas.

The government guidance for England made it mandatory for kids over 11, and teachers, to wear a covering when moving around buildings.

It is the latest in a number of u-turns for the government, but the rules stop short of asking teachers to enforce masks inside a classroom.

Secondary pupils should also wear face coverings when they travel on school buses or dedicated transport.

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Hotels are open

Travelling is banned, internationally or domestically – so last minute getaways for winter sun are off the cards.

But some travelling is allowed – if it is for essential reasons.

People can travel for work purposes only, so hotels will be open for business trips.

Takeaway beer

We all know that there has been a lot of discussion about keeping pubs open – and for the foreseeable, the majority will be closed.

But boozers can sell thirsty punters pints via takeaway services, as long as beer is ordered online or via phone or post.

Pre-ordered drinks can be sold and collected by a customer provided they do not enter the premises.


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Care home visits

Care homes were at the centre of the first lockdown, and the rules are different for November’s shutdown.

New guidance suggests relatives can visit a loved one in a care home, provided they are a close family member or friend.

This can be done with visitor pods, floor to ceiling screens or separate entrances.

Outdoor visits are also allowed, provided guests do not enter the main building.

Protests

You will remember the huge demonstrations in response to George Floyd’s death.

This time protests have been discouraged, with the PM’s spokesman explaining councils should “engage, explain and encourage people to follow the rules before moving on to enforce the law".

Fines

People who flout the rules could be fined up to £6,400.

Fines start at £100 if paid within 14 days, otherwise it's £200. These penalties double each time for repeat offenders.

Businesses can be slapped with £10,000 fines, starting at £1,000 in the first instance and rising with further offences.

  • Coronavirus
  • Lockdown
  • Boris Johnson
  • Pubs
  • Family

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