What are the new coronavirus rules for England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland?

22 September 2020, 14:12 | Updated: 23 September 2020, 13:12

By Maddie Goodfellow

The latest Boris Johnson update has revealed a raft of new rules around weddings and facemarks in the UK. Here are the new government guidelines from wedding guests to face masks in taxis.

In a Commons statement, the Prime Minister announced new restrictions on bars and restaurants, face masks, weddings and sports fixtures.

Boris Johnson's update also ditched his 'get back to work' messaging and said anyone who can work from home should do so.

Mr Johnson told MPs that the Government must "act now to avoid still graver consequences later on" and confirmed that the new restrictions will be in place for the next six months.

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He will also address the nation from Downing Street later about the new restrictions and the UK's fight against the virus.

It comes after the coronavirus alert level was raised from three to four, meaning there is now a high or rising level of transmission.

Here are Boris Johnson latest updates around the government guidelines on face masks, weddings, funerals and everything else:

What are the new rules on face masks?

Face masks will become compulsory for bar staff, shop workers, waiters and taxi drivers in an effort to combat the rise in coronavirus cases in England.

Fines for failing to wear a face mask will rise to £200 and will be extended to customers when they are not seated at a table.

Boris Johnson said in his statement: "We will extend the requirement to wear face coverings to include staff in retail, all users of taxis and private hire vehicles and staff and customers in indoor hospitality, except when seated at a table to eat or drink.

"In retail, leisure and tourism and other sectors, our Covid-secure guidelines will become legal obligations."

Boris' weddings and funerals rules update

The PM also restricted weddings to 15 people, down from 30. However, 30 people can now attend a funeral, up from 15.

He told the Commons: "Now is the time to tighten up the rule of six.

"I'm afraid that from Monday a maximum of 15 people will be able to attend wedding ceremonies and receptions, though up to 30 can still attend a funeral as now."

What are the new coroanvirus rules for bars and restaurants?

Pubs, bars and restaurants would be required to close by 10pm from Thursday.

The Government said in new plans that night-time venues to close at 10pm in a bid to stem rising coronavirus cases.

In parliament, Boris Johnson said: "From Thursday, all pubs, bars and restaurants must operate a table service only, except for takeaways. Together with all hospitality venues, they must close at 10pm.

"And to help the police enforce this rule that means, alas, closing not just calling for last orders, because simplicity is paramount."

On Tuesday, Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove said the shift would "make a difference", adding: "There is evidence that the longer venues stay open, the greater degree of social mixing that takes place."

Asked if a group of six people could leave a pub at 10pm and carry on drinking at a house, Mr Gove suggested they could as this was within the rules.

They will also be restricted by law to offering table service only.

Working from home

And the PM ditched his drive to get people back into the office, telling Britons they should work from home if they can.

He told MPs: "First, we are once again asking office workers who can work from home to do so. In key public services and in all professions where home working is not possible, such as construction or retail, people should continue to attend their workplaces."

However, he clarified that this does not mean people will be expected to stay at home more generally.

"I want to stress that this is by no means a return to the full lockdown of March. We're not issuing a general instruction to stay at home," he said.

"We will ensure that schools, colleges, universities stay open because nothing is more important than the education, health and well-being of our young people.

"We will ensure businesses can stay open in a Covid-compliant way. However we must take action to suppress the disease."

Sports

Boris Johnson also confirmed that plans to allow limited crowds to sporting fixtures had been suspended.

He also explained that the 'Rule of Six' will apply to indoor sports teams for the foreseeable future, telling parliament: "We will also have to extend the rule of six to all adult indoor team sports."

What are the new rules in Scotland?

A 10pm curfew will be put in place for hospitality businesses in Scotland, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has announced.

From Wednesday, Scots will not be able to meet in other people's homes.

The First Minister said that data suggests this measure has reduced the spread of the virus in the west of Scotland and extending it to the rest of the country will hopefully reduce transmission.

Those living alone will be able to for extended households, couples not living together, those who need childcare and tradespeople will be exempt from the measures.

The changes only impact meeting in people's homes, with regulations for outdoor and public indoor meetings remaining the same.

However, the First Minister announced children under 12 will be exempt from the limit of six people from two households when meeting outside and those between 12 and 18 will be able to meet a limit of six others from six households outdoors.

Ms Sturgeon also advised against car-sharing in Scotland.

According to Test and Protect data, she said, there is a "significant risk of transmission" in such settings.

What are the new rules in Wales?

People in Wales have been urged to avoid unnecessary journeys by First Minister Mark Drakeford.

He said reducing the amount of journeys and meetings with others resulted in "less danger" being posed to people.

Pubs, cafes, restaurants and casinos in Wales must operate as table service only and close from 10pm, while off-licences including supermarkets will also be stopped from selling alcohol at the same time as part of the measures, which come into force at 6pm on Thursday.

Only six people are able to meet indoors and must be part of a single extended household.

Face coverings must be worn on public transport, in shops and in enclosed public spaces across Wales.

Six areas of south Wales - Caerphilly county borough, Rhondda Cynon Taf, Bridgend, Merthyr Tydfil, Newport and Blaenau Gwent - are under stricter restrictions as part of local lockdowns.

Under the measures, people must not enter or leave the areas without a reasonable excuse.

They are only able to meet outdoors and must not meet members of their extended households indoors.