PUBS, hairdressers and gyms have been forced to shut across England as the nation enters a second national lockdown.
The lockdown, which came into force today, November 5, is set to remain in place for four weeks, until December 2.
It comes as the Office for National Statistics estimated that 568,100 people were infected with coronavirus in the week ending October 23.
There are now fears the virus is spreading faster than the initial “worst-case scenario” predicted.
Britain has also passed one million Covid cases after 21,915 more people tested positive for the bug.
During the press conference, Mr Johnson said: “I’m afraid from Thursday, the basic message isn’t the same. Stay at home, protect the NHS, save lives.”
He said that Christmas would be “different this year” but he was hopeful that families would still be able to meet up thanks to the “tough action” he was taking.
Which businesses must close?
According to guidance published on the gov.uk website, the following businesses must close during the second lockdown:
- Restaurants, pubs and bars, except for takeaway and delivery
- Non-essential retail shops, including electronics and clothing stores, although they can remain open for delivery and click and collect
- Market stalls selling non-essential goods
- Vehicle showrooms
- Travel agents
- Betting shops
- Tobacco and vape shops
- Auction houses
- Car washes
- Accommodation such as hotels and hostels, although they can remain open for visitors travelling for work purposes
- Indoor and outdoor leisure facilities such as bowling alleys, leisure centres and gyms
- Sports facilities including swimming pools, golf courses and driving ranges, dance studios, stables and riding centres, soft play facilities, climbing walls and climbing centres, archery and shooting ranges
- Water and theme parks
- Personal care facilities such as hairdressers, nail salons, spas, tanning salons, massage parlours, tattoo studios and body piercing studios
- Entertainment venues such as theatres, concert halls, cinemas, museums and galleries
- Community centres and halls
- Places of worship, apart from for the purposes of independent prayer, and service broadcasting and funerals
Restaurants, pubs and hairdressers have been open since July 4, while non-essential retailers were allowed to welcome back customers from June 15.
Gyms were among the last businesses to reopen after the first lockdown, and were only given the green light to do so from July 25.
Meanwhile, nightclubs, along with dance halls and discotheques still haven’t reopened after being forced to shut in March.
Which businesses can stay open?
Similar to the first lockdown, only a small group of retailers will be allowed to stay open. These include:
- Takeaways and food deliveries
- Health shops
- Medical services – eg, dentists
- Pet shops
- Hardware stores
- Garden centres
- Building merchants
- Retail shops in hospitals
- Petrol stations, car repair and MOT services
- Bicycle shops
- Funeral directors
- Laundrettes and dry cleaners
- Agricultural supplies shops
- Banks, building socities
- Short-term loan providers, credit unions and cash points
- Storage and distribtion centres
- Post Offices
- Car rental services and car parks near vital services such as supermarkets
- Public toilets
- Car garages and repair shops
- Food banks and shelters
- Outdoor playgrounds
The news was met with dismay from those in the hospitality industry – fearing another lockdown's effect on their businesses.
Kate Nicholls, chief executive of UK Hospitality, said a national lockdown would be "absolutely devastating" for the industry and called for the sector to receive "significant additional help in order to get through this".
While Helen Dickinson, chief executive of the British Retail Consortium, added: “Retail faces a nightmare before Christmas as the Government proposes to close thousands of retail premises under this new national lockdown.
“It will cause untold damage to the high street in the run up to Christmas, cost countless jobs, and permanently set back the recovery of the wider economy, with only a minimal effect on the transmission of the virus.”
What else did Boris Johnson announce?
Other measures announced by Mr Johnson over the weekend include:
- Pubs and restaurants will shut but will be allowed to do takeaways and deliveries
- Nurseries and schools are to remain open
- International travel will be banned – except for work
- No overnight stays and internal UK-wide travel is set to be discouraged
- All non-essential retail will close, but supermarkets will be able to sell any and all goods they like
- There will be a nationwide ban on people mixing indoors – except for childcare
- People will be allowed to exercise outdoors
- Furlough extension during lockdown
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The announcement came after ministers were briefed by scientific advisers in an emergency crunch meeting, following leaked reports of the second lockdown looming.
It was reported that Britain faces a “massive spike” in Covid deaths on Christmas Eve if no action is taken , scientists warned.
Brits reacted by hitting the shops and panic buying loo roll and milk, while also making plans to flee out of cities to the countryside.
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