'Rule of Six' explained: Are babies and children included?

14 September 2020, 11:39

By Maddie Goodfellow

The government has announced that from today social gatherings in England will be limited to six people. But are babies and children included in the new six person limit?

The latest coronavirus restriction of socialising in groups of no more than six come after a recent surge in Covid-19 cases and rising fears of a second wave.

The new rules mean that when meeting up with either friends or family you do not live with you cannot be in a group of more than six at one time.

The new rules are imposed on gatherings inside and outside.

But who do the new rules apply to and are there any exceptions? Here's the rule of six explained and whether it includes babies and children:

Are babies and children included in the new rule of six?

Yes, children are included in the 'Rule of Six'.

In accordance with the new rules, only six people can meet in a social setting at any one time, including in pubs, bars and restaurants.

It also includes situations where there are two households meeting up.

The total number includes children, meaning that a family of five can only meet up with one other person at a time.

However, official guidance states that in order to ‘continue existing arrangements where children do not live in the same household as both their parents’ families are allowed to break the ‘Rule of Six’.

Are babies included in the new limits?

The 'Rule of Six' also applies to babies, as the limits are in place for all people of all ages.

It has been confirmed that there are exemptions to the rules, such as schools workplaces.

Weddings can take place with up to 30 people, however children and babies would count towards this limit if they attend.

Are the rules the same in the other UK nations?

In Wales and Scotland, the ‘rule of six’ law does not apply to children as it does in England.

In Northern Ireland, the limit for gatherings is six people from up to two different households, but children whose parents do not live in the same household can move between homes and are not included in this rule.

What is the fine for breaking the rules?

The fines start at £100 but rise to as much as £3,200 if people break the rules multiple times.

People who organise illegal parties face even higher penalties of up to £10,000.