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COVID-19: latest guidance on protecting yourself

View information and advice about protecting yourself including what you can and can't do during the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Coronavirus restrictions: what you can and cannot do

Restrictions are easing across the UK. You must continue to follow government guidance which is now enforced by law.
On Monday, 12 April 2021, some of the rules on what you can and cannot do changed. 

Coronavirus restrictions: what you can and cannot do  

Plan for easing restrictions

The government has created a plan to lift coronavirus restrictions called a roadmap. The dates for easing restrictions are not fixed. Fixed dates for each step won't be announced until the government thinks it's definitely safe to move to that step.

  • Step 1 - changes on 29 March 2021: outdoor gathering (including private gardens) of 6 people (the Rule of 6) or 2 households allowed, outdoor sports facilities can reopen and formally organised outdoor sports allowed.
  • Step 2 - changes on 12 April 2021: non-essential retail can reopen which includes hairdressers and salons, indoor leisure facilities such as gyms can reopen (but only for use by people on their own or in household groups), hospitality venues can serve people outdoors although table service applies. Up to 15 people allowed to attend weddings, wakes and receptions. Up to 30 people for funerals.
  • Step 3 - not before 17 May 2021: most outdoor social contact rules lifted - no more than 30 people, rule of 6 or 2 households applies indoors. Indoor hospitality and entertainment, such as cinemas, accommodation, indoor sports and exercise classes can reopen. Up to 30 people allowed to attend weddings, funerals and other types of significant life events. Up to 10,000 people allowed at seated outdoor events and organised indoor adult sports.
  • Step 4 - not before 21 June 2021: all limits on social contact removed, nightclubs can reopen and restrictions on large events and performances lifted.
Summary of the government's roadmap out of lockdown

Testing children and isolation from school

Find out what to do if your child has COVID-19 symptoms, tests positive, has to self-isolate and more.

Face coverings

Wear face coverings in shops and all public places, as much as possible. Government rules mean customers must wear a face covering in several indoor settings. This includes shops, public transport, taxis, takeaways, banks, post offices, places of worship, barbers, hairdressers and libraries or you could face a fine. This is to help curb the spread of the virus.

This does not apply to children under the age of 3, is optional for children under the age of 11 and not mandatory for people with a disability or a legitimate reason not to wear one.

To safely wear a face covering:

  • Wash or sanitise your hands before you put it on and after you remove it
  • Make sure it covers your nose and mouth
  • Try to avoid touching it while you're wearing it
  • If it becomes damp, change it and try to store it in a plastic bag until you can wash or dispose of it
  • Change or wash it daily
  • Wash you hands for at least 20 seconds with soap after handling it
  • View full government guidance on wearing face coverings 

Information and advice mainly from GOV.UK and NHS.UK

There are several information sources covering a range of different topics. You may need to use more than one of these websites to help keep you stay safer. 

  • Coronavirus; comprehensive information on GOV.UK - it includes testing, protecting yourself and others, employment and financial support, school closures, education, childcare, information for businesses, healthcare workers and carers, and more.       

NHS Test and Trace

Find out about the test and trace service, including what happens if you test positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) or have had close contact with someone who has tested positive. There's also information about how to apply for a test.

Vaccination programme

Read about the vaccine, what you need to do and what will happen on the day of your appointment.

Handwashing advice

For the safest and most thorough handwashing method, watch this NHS video. Hand washing still plays a key role in protecting yourself and others. Wash your hands regularly, use soap and water for 20 seconds or use hand sanitiser and make sure you store hand sanitiser safely out of reach of children.


Watch video on YouTube (1min 44secs)

Report a business or individual possibly breaking COVID-19 rules

Find out how to report either a business or an individual possibly breaking coronavirus measures.

Local helpline for coronavirus (COVID-19)

If you’re a vulnerable resident or know of a vulnerable resident that requires food supplies, or any other help and support please contact us.

Stay up-to-date with COVID-19 information and advice

View information and advice about the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19).

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