From today, 20th of December 2020, all London boroughs are under Tier 4 restrictions along with Kent and Hertfordshire and areas of Essex in the South East of England. What is Tier 4? What are Tier 4 rules? What you can do and cannot do in Tier 4 areas.
By law, if you are in a Tier 4 area you have to follow the rules.
Here are the main Tier 4 rules:
- You cannot meet other people indoors. This rule includes Christmas day when previously you may have been allowed to meet other bubbles of people!
- You can meet with people who you live with and anyone that is part of your support bubble.
- You can only meet one other person from another house, and your meeting must be outside.
- Government has just announced that this rule will apply throughout the Christmas period as well.
- Tier 4 means simply ‘Stay at home’:
- You should stay at home unless you have a good reason to leave.
- What are the good reasons to leave home?
- You can leave where you live if you are going to work and if you cannot work from home.
- Volunteering is also an acceptable reason to leave home.
2- Shopping for essentials (food, medicines…)
- You can leave your home if you are going to do food shopping. You can also shop from businesses who are permitted to stay open such as takeaway shops.
- Banks, Post Office and courier companies will also carry on operating during Tier 4 restrictions.
3- If its a legal obligation to leave your home
- You are allowed to leave home if you have legal commitments to do so. Leaving home to deal with buying, selling, letting and renting properties in Tier 4 restrictions is acceptable.
4- School – Childcare
- If you are a teacher and schools are open, you are allowed to leave home during this lockdown to attend work.
- You can take your children to school. You can also contact parents to arrange meetings during the Tier 4 restrictions, although you should maintain social distancing where possible.
5- Support bubble and care
- You can leave home to visit people who are in your support bubble. You can also leave home to provide support for vulnerable people.
6- Medical Reasons
- Leaving home for medical reasons is naturally acceptable.
- You can leave your home to get a COVID-19 test.
- You can leave home with someone who is giving birth.
- You can leave home if you are under risk of being hurt, or are the victim of domestic violence.
- You can take your animals to the veterinarian.
- You can also visit someone who is in a care home, hospice or hospital if that person is at the end stages of life.
7- You can attend funerals (limitations apply).
8- You can attend weddings. (limitations apply).
9- You can leave home if you are going to exercise outdoors.
There are no limits to how many times you can exercise outside, but gyms are closed, and you can only exercise with one person from another household.
- To cut a long story short, you must not meet others from another household bubble for any kind of activities whether it’s indoor or outside.
- You must act as if everyone in Tier 4 area has Covid-19 and you must stay at home.
- If you had to go out, you should return home as soon as possible to avoid catching or spreading either the original or more likely the new coronavirus strain.
- To maintain social distancing you must stay at least 2 metres away from anyone apart from your household and keep your face covering on at all times.
- Meeting up with other people indoors is strictly forbidden by law.
Places to meet up with one other people outside your support bubble:
- Parks, forests, beaches.
- Public gardens.
- Outside of heritage sites.
- Outdoor sports courts.
You can’t meet up with people in private gardens unless they are in your support bubble.
What happens if I break the rules?
- You are obliged to follow these rules as they are set out in law. The police can take legal action and issue fixed penalty notices.
- If you break the law, you can expect to get a fixed penalty fee of £200 and this will increase to £6,400 for repeated offences. The police can also issue £10,000 fines if you attend a meeting with illegal gathering of 30 people or more.
Can I go in and out of Tier 4 areas?
- You cannot leave your home under Tier 4 restrictions if you are living in Tier 4 areas. You can only leave your home if you are going to work, school or food shopping.
- You can’t enter or leave a Tier 4 area unless you have legally accepted reasons.
- You shouldn’t travel into a Tier 4 area from another part of Tier 1,2 and 3 areas.
International travel from or to Tier 4 areas
- If you are currently in a Tier 4 area holidays in the UK or abroad not permitted
- You shouldn’t be travelling abroad unless you have been permitted.
- It’s also advised for you to check public health advice before making any decisions to visit another country.
You are not allowed to stay away from your home unless:
- you are unable to return home.
- if you are moving house.
- if you are attending a funeral.
- you can stay outside your home if it’s for work purposes.
- a child requiring accommodation.
You are strictly advised to return home if you are living in a Tier 4 area.
Businesses that can’t stay open
Non essential shops including:
- Clothing and homeware stores, vehicle showrooms, betting, tobacco, vape shops, mobile phone shops, tailors etc need to be closed.
- Cafes, restaurants, pubs, bars and social clubs unless they can offer takeaway or click and collect services.
- Personal care shops, barbers, beauty salons, massage parlours etc must be closed.
Public services will carry on operating including:
- Jobcentre Plus
- Civil registration offices
- Passport and visa services
- Waste or recycling centres.
What areas in under Tier 4 restrictions?
- Surrey (excluding Waverley)
- The boroughs of Gosport, Havant, Portsmouth, Rother and Hastings
- All 32 London boroughs and the city of London.
- Central Bedfordshire
- Milton Keynes
- Essex (excluding Colchester, Uttlesford and Tendring)