Government COVID-19 updates

See all updated Government COVID-19 business requirements here.

Updated 29 September
  • Requirements relating to stopping singing and dancing (subject to exemptions) ⇓
  • Requirements relating to not play music which exceeds 85db ⇓
  • Requirements relating to signage and information ⇓
These Regulations came into force today (28 September 2020) to place the following additional requirement on businesses:
 Requirements relating to stopping singing and dancing (subject to exemptions):
The Regulation:

A person responsible for carrying on a business of a public house, café, restaurant or bar (including a bar in a hotel or members’ club) must, during the emergency period, take all reasonable measures to stop—
(a) singing on the premises by customers in groups of more than six; or
(b) dancing on the premises by customers.
 
The above does not apply in relation to dancing—
(a) at a wedding ceremony or wedding reception by the couple to whom the wedding relates; or
(b) at a civil partnership ceremony or reception following a civil partnership ceremony by the couple to whom the civil partnership ceremony relates.

 
Requirements relating to not play music which exceeds 85db:
The Regulation:

“A person responsible for carrying on a business of a public house, café, restaurant or bar (including a bar in a hotel or members’ club) must, during the emergency period, ensure that no music is played on the premises which exceeds 85db(A) when measured at the source of the music.”
Requirements relating to signage and information
A requirement on persons responsible for a business in a relevant area*. That requirement is either to display a notice at the relevant area informing persons on the premises of the requirement to wear a face covering unless an exemption applies or the person has a reasonable excuse not to wear a face covering, or to take other measures to ensure that persons entering the premises are so informed.
 
A contravention of this requirement is an offence, punishable by a fine or by way of a fixed penalty of up to £10,000.
 
The Regulation:

A responsible person must, during the emergency period—
(a) display a notice providing the information in paragraph (2); or
(b) take other measures to ensure that any person who enters the relevant area without wearing a face covering is given the information specified in paragraph (4).
 
(2) The information referred to in paragraph (1)(a) is that any person present at the relevant area is required to wear a face covering under the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Wearing of Face Coverings in a Relevant Place) Regulations 2020 unless an exemption under those Regulations applies to the person or the person has a reasonable excuse under those Regulations not to wear a face covering; and
 
(3) A notice under paragraph (1)(a) must be displayed in a conspicuous location at the relevant area
 
(4) The information to be given to the person under paragraph (1)(b) is that the person is required to wear a face covering unless an exemption applies to the person or the person has a reasonable excuse not to wear a face covering.


* “Relevant area” means any place where a person is required to wear a face covering under the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Wearing of Face Coverings in a Relevant Place) Regulations 2020;

Designated businesses and organisations, including hospitality, close contact services and leisure venues, will also be legally required to log details of customers, visitors and staff for NHS Track and Trace and from Thursday 24 September they will be required to display official NHS QR code posters under law ahead of the NHS COVID-19 app being rolled out nationally next week. Businesses will be expected to make sure their customers are aware of the rules around QR codes by displaying posters and speaking to customers directly.

Businesses required to display an NHS Track and Trace posters and request customers details-

(a)restaurants, including restaurants and dining rooms in hotels or members’ clubs;

(b)cafes, including workplace canteens;

(c)bars, including bars in hotels or members’ clubs;

(d)public houses.

Leisure and tourism services, provided by or at—

(a)amusement arcades;

(b)art fairs;

(c)betting and bingo halls;

(d)casinos;

(e)clubs providing team sporting activities;

(f)facilities for use by elite and professional sportspeople (including sports stadia);

(g)heritage locations and attractions open to the public (including castles, stately homes and other historic houses);

(h)hotels and other guest accommodation provided on a commercial basis, including in Bed & breakfast accommodation, boats, campsites, caravans, chalets, guest houses, holiday parks, hostels, motels, pubs, sleeper trains and yurts;

(i)indoor sport and leisure centres;

(j)outdoor swimming pools and lidos;

(k)museums and galleries;

(l)music recording studios open for public hire or other public use;

(m)public libraries.

3.  Close physical contact services, including those provided by—

(a)barbers;

(b)beauticians (including those providing cosmetic, aesthetic and wellness treatments);

(c)dress fitters, tailors and fashion designers;

(d)hairdressers;

(e)nail bars and salons;

(f)skin and body piercing services;

(g)sports and massage therapists;

(h)tattooists.

4.  Services provided for social, cultural and recreational purposes in the following premises—

(a)community centres;

(b)youth and community centres;

(c)village halls.

You should create and display a QR code if you are: a business, place of worship or community organisation with a physical location that is open to the publican event which is taking place in a physical location.

If you have more than one venue, you need to create a separate QR code for each location. You can add multiple locations in the service.

Use this service to create a QR code for display in your business venue. Get visitors to scan the QR code when they arrive, using the NHS COVID-19 app. This is to help trace and stop the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

A majority of businesses and organisations have been playing their part in tackling the virus by putting in place COVID-secure measures in their venues, but new legal requirements will make it compulsory for them to do so or risk facing a fine.

The regulations will be enforced by Local Authorities, who will have the power to issue fines of up to £1,000 for venues that are failing to comply, or the police as a last resort. Fines will rise to up to £4,000 for repeat offenders.

The Prime Minister announced further restrictions on 22 September affecting licensed businesses from Thursday 24 September.

  • Office workers who can work from home to do so.  In key public services – and in all professions where homeworking is not possible, such as construction or retail – people should continue to attend their workplaces.
  • From Thursday all pubs, bars and restaurants must operate table-service only, except for takeaways and must close at 10pm.  The 10pm terminal hour means closing, and not calling for last orders.
  • See the regs relating to restriction on opening hours and table service
  • See obligations on hospitality regs here
  • The Government will extend the requirement to wear face coverings to include staff in retail and staff and customers in indoor hospitality, except when seated at a table to eat or drink.

The penalty for failing to wear a mask or breaking the rule of six will now double to £200 for a first offence.

Plans for the return of spectators to sporting events has been shelved and will now no longer go ahead as was planned from 1 October 2020.

18 September Hospitality venues in England are legally required to enforce the rule of 6 or face a fine of up to £4,000.