Cardiff and Swansea lockdown: When does it start and what are the rules?

25 September 2020, 12:57 | Updated: 25 September 2020, 14:06

Cardiff will face local lockdown from Sunday
Cardiff will face local lockdown from Sunday. Picture: PA

By Maddie Goodfellow

Cardiff and Swansea will be placed under local lockdown, it has been confirmed. But when will it start and what will the new restrictions be?

It will mean eight counties will be under lockdown, along with one town.

On Thursday, there were 25 new cases in Carmarthenshire, 39 in Cardiff and 41 in Swansea.

Wales' Health Minister Vaughan Gething said cases in Carmarthenshire had "overwhelmingly" been linked to Llanelli, with the vast majority of these bing linked so social gatherings with a lack of social distancing.

Ministers will also meet public health experts, local authority leaders and others over the weekend to consider whether local restrictions need to be extended to Neath Port Talbot, the Vale of Glamorgan and Torfaen on Sunday evening.

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Where exactly will be under lockdown?

The lockdown will apply to all people living in everyone living in Llanelli, Cardiff and Swansea.

Caerphilly, Rhondda Cynon Taf, Bridgend, Blaenau Gwent, Merthyr Tydfil and Newport are already under local lockdown rules in Wales and cannot leave their areas without a reasonable excuse.

The changes mean roughly 1.5 million people will be under local lockdown, a little under half the Welsh population.

When will the lockdown start?

The Welsh Government says a local lockdown will start in Llanelli at 18:00 tomorrow, and in Cardiff and Swansea at 18:00on Sunday following the rise in Covid 19 cases.

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What are the rules?

- People will not be allowed to enter or leave these areas without a reasonable excuse, such as travel for work or education

- People will only be able to meet people they don’t live with outdoors for the time being. They will not be able to form, or be in, extended households (sometimes known as ‘bubbles’). This means meeting indoors (in people’s houses, in a pub or elsewhere) with anyone you don’t live with is not allowed at the moment unless you have a good reason, such as providing care to a vulnerable person.

- All licensed premises have to stop serving alcohol at 10pm.

- Everyone over 11 will be required to wear face coverings in indoor places, which are open to the public, such as shops, as well as on public transport – as is the case in the rest of Wales (exemptions still apply).

What has the Health Minister said?

Health Minister Vaughan Gething said: “Over the last few weeks we’ve taken action to put local coronavirus restrictions in place in parts of South Wales.

"Following a worrying rise in cases of coronavirus in the town of Llanelli and in our two largest cities, including the capital – Cardiff and Swansea – we are taking further action by introducing additional measures in these areas.

“Introducing restrictions in any parts of Wales is always an incredibly difficult decision for us to make – having to introduce these restrictions in our biggest cities, including our capital, is another sombre milestone in a difficult year.

“We’re acting to protect people’s health and to try and break the chain of transmission and stop the situation from getting worse.“We need everyone’s help to bring coronavirus under control.

"We need everyone to pull together and to follow the measures which are there to protect you and your loved ones.”