UK Politics

Curfew for pubs and restaurants – but what other measures could be announced later?


Boris Johnson is to announce new measures to tackle the coronavirus pandemic after his scientific advisers warned cases could reach 49,000 a day.

Mr Johnson, who has said he does not want to put the country into a second national lockdown, is expected to announce new measures designed to slow the spread of the virus in England.

What do we know about the new restrictions and what further measures could be brought in?

Watch and follow live on Sky News as Boris Johnson updates MPs on coronavirus plans at 12.30pm – with a Downing Street broadcast at 8pm

UK could face 200-plus deaths per day in November

What new restrictions have been announced?


Curfew and table service

A curfew was announced on Monday night, with pubs, bars and restaurants in England forced to close at 10pm every night from Thursday to try to prevent alcohol-fuelled breaches of social distancing rules.

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The entire hospitality sector will also now be restricted by law to table service only – something the British Beer and Pubs Association said could push some in the sector "to breaking point".

Work from home if you can

Ahead of Mr Johnson's announcement, Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove told Sky News: "If it is possible for people to work from home they should do so."

He told Kay Burley there would be a "shift in emphasis" after a big push to get people back into the office just weeks before.

Michael Gove says there will be a shift in emphasis to working from home
Gove 'encourages' working from home

What other restrictions could be brought in?

A ban on socialising

The prime minister could announce a ban on different households mixing together.

Mr Johnson might remove exemptions to the "rule of six" that has been in force since 14 October, according to The Times.

Professor Chris Whitty, the chief medical officer for England, said on Monday that limiting social contact between households was key to tackling the virus.

He presented predictive graphs showing the nation how the virus could reach 49,000 cases a day by mid-October if further restrictive measures were not brought in.

Social gatherings of more than six people from any household are already illegal in England, while Scotland has the same rule but only two households are allowed to be in that group.

Reduction in wedding party numbers

Thirty people are currently allowed to attend weddings but this could be slashed to 15 under the new rules, The Times reports.

Delay sports and concert spectators trial

The government has been trialling spectators returning to professional sports events and indoor concert venues, with a controlled return of fans set for 1 October.

But that is expected to be delayed, with Mr Gove saying the government is looking at how it can "pause that programme".

Compulsory face coverings

Face coverings are mandatory in shops, supermarkets and on public transport – with fines of £100 in England, and £60 in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland if you do not wear one in those pRead More – Source