If you are clinically extremely vulnerable we are not currently advising that you need to shield, however it is important that you continue to take precautions. Find out more from the general guidance for clinically extremely vulnerable people.
Social contact restrictions
If you live in one of the affected areas, in order to help prevent the spread of coronavirus you must not:
- host people you do not live with in your home or garden, unless they’re in your support bubble
- meet people you do not live with in their home or garden, whether inside or outside of the affected areas unless they’re in your support bubble
A support bubble is where a household with one adult joins with another household. Households within a bubble can still visit each other, stay overnight, and visit public places together.
People can still come inside your home or garden for specific purposes set out in law:
- where everyone in the gathering lives together or is in the same support bubble
- to attend a birth at the mother’s request
- to visit a person who is dying (the visitor can be someone the dying person lives with, a close family member, friend or, if none of those is visiting, anyone else)
- to fulfil a legal obligation
- for work purposes, (see guidance on working safely in other people’s homes or for the provision of voluntary or charitable services
- for the purposes of education or training
- for the purposes of childcare provided by a registered provider
- to provide emergency assistance
- to enable one or more persons in the gathering to avoid injury or illness or to escape a risk of harm
- to facilitate a house move
- to provide care or assistance to a vulnerable person
- to continue existing arrangements for access to, and contact between, parents and children where the children do not live in the same household as their parents, or one of their parents
When meeting friends and family you do not live with (or have formed a support bubble with) you must not meet in a group of more than 6. Further detail can be found in the guidance for meeting others safely, including associated exemptions.
If you live in the affected local area, you must not meet or host people you do not live with in private homes or gardens unless they are in your support bubble. In addition to these restrictions, we advise that you should not:
- socialise with people you do not live with, unless they’re in your support bubble, in any public venue. This applies to inside and outside of the affected areas. Examples of public venues include pubs, restaurants, cafes, shops, places of worship, community centres, leisure and entertainment venues, or visitor attractions and parks
- visit friends or family in care homes, other than in exceptional circumstances. Care homes should restrict visits to these circumstances
If you operate a business or organise events within the affected areas you should take steps to ensure people do not socialise with people they do not live with, in line with COVID-19 secure guidance.
You should follow all relevant transport guidance when making a journey into, within or out of the areas affected.
You must wear a face covering on public transport and in substantially enclosed areas of transport hubs in England. You will be breaking the law if you fail to do so and could be fined. Some people do not have to wear a face covering including for age, health, or disability reasons.
You should try not to share a car with those outside your household or support bubble. If you need to, try to:
- share the car with the same people each time
- keep to small groups of people at any one time
- open windows for ventilation
- travel side by side or behind other people, rather than facing them, where seating arrangements allow
- face away from each other
- consider seating arrangements to maximise distance between people in the vehicle
- clean your car between journeys using standard cleaning products – make sure you clean door handles and other areas that people may touch
- ask the driver and passengers to wear a face covering
See more guidance on car sharing and travelling with people outside your household group.
You can travel outside your area. However, you must not meet people you do not live with in their home or garden, whether inside or outside of your area, unless they’re in your support bubble.
You can still go on holiday outside of your area, but you should only do this with people you live with (or have formed a support bubble with).
There is separate guidance on what to do if you have booked holiday accommodation in an area with local restrictions.
Religious ceremonies and places of worship
You may attend a mosque, church, synagogue, temple or other place or worship, but you should socially distance from people outside of your household. This means maintaining a distance of 2 metres, or 1 metre with mitigations (such as wearing face coverings).
If possible, prayer or religious services should take place outdoors.
Going to work
People living inside and outside of the affected areas can continue to travel in and out for work. Workplaces must implement COVID-19 secure guidance.
You can continue to use early years and childcare settings, including childminders and providers offering before or after school clubs or other out-of-school settings for children. You can also continue to employ nannies – see guidance on working safely in other people’s homes.
Friends or family who do not live with you must not visit your home to help with childcare unless they are part of your support bubble. The only people who should help you with childcare in your home are people you live with, people in your support bubble, or registered childcare providers including nannies.
Children of parents who are separated can continue to move between households.
Schools and colleges (face coverings)
In education settings where pupils and students in Year 7 and above are educated, face coverings should be worn by staff, visitors and pupils/students when moving around in corridors and communal areas where social distancing is difficult to maintain.
It is not necessary to wear face coverings in the classroom, where protective measures already mean the risks are lower and they may inhibit teaching and learning.
People can move home. Estate and letting agents as well as removals firms can continue to work and people looking to move home can continue to undertake viewings.