Bristol prepares for a second lockdown on Thursday

England will enter a second national lockdown in a few days – with coronavirus cases in the UK passing a million.

The announcement was made at a press conference on Saturday (31 October) by Prime Minister Boris Johnson – with the month-long shut-down due to come into effect on Thursday after Wednesday’s parliamentary debate.

If passed by MPs, the lockdown will continue until Wednesday 2 December.

It will see pubs, restaurants and non-essential businesses, such as hair salons and gyms closed. Schools, universities and playgrounds will stay open.

With localised lockdowns currently in place in other parts of the UK, Bristol is on the unique Tier 1 plus – but as elsewhere, cases have been sharply rising.

On Friday (30 October) Director of Public Health Christina Gray urged residents to take action to prevent the spread of the virus.

She said social interaction – where families and friends are mixing between multiple households and not maintaining 2m distance – is thought to be one of the key drivers for the increase. This is particularly concerning among the 30 to 69 age group.

Bristol City Council announced last week it would be employing a minimum of 16 COVID-19 Marshalls to explain the guidance and help people to comply.

The council will also be taking on some responsibility for the local contact tracing  which will support the national system. 

What will the new restrictions be?

  • People will be told to stay at home except for specific reasons – this includes work which can’t be done from home, childcare or education, outdoor exercise, essential shopping, medical reasons, providing care for vulnerable people or volunteering and visiting members of your support bubble.
  • Meeting indoors or in private gardens will not be allowed, but individuals can meet one other person from another household outside in a public place.
  • Children will still be able to move between homes if their parents are separated.
  • People will not be asked to resume shielding – but clinically vulnerable people will be asked to be “especially careful”.
  • Schools and universities will remain open.
  • Non-essential retail will close, but can remain open for click-and-collect delivery.
  • Pubs, bars, restaurants will have to close, but can still provide takeaway and delivery, excluding takeaway of alcohol.
  • Construction sites and manufacturing workplaces can remain open.
  • Indoor and outdoor leisure facilities, such as gyms and swimming pools, will close – along with entertainment venues and personal care facilities such as beauty salons and hairdressers.
  • Places of worship will close, unless they are being used for funerals, to broadcast acts of worship, individual prayer, formal childcare, or essential services such as blood donation or food banks.
  • Weddings and civil partnership ceremonies will not be able to take place except in exceptional circumstances, and funerals will be limited to a maximum of 30 people.
  • Overnight stays, staying in a second home, and holidays will not be allowed – including in the UK and abroad – although there are exceptions, such as work trips.
  • People will be told to avoid all non-essential travel by private or public transport.

For help and support during lockdown you can call the Knowle West CV-19 Helpline on 0800 694 0184.