Detailed guide: Bolton: local restrictions

An outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19) has been identified in Bolton. The government and the relevant local authorities are working together to control the spread of the virus.

Restrictions and guidance apply to the specified areas below.

Affected local areas

  • Bolton (Metropolitan Borough Council)

From midnight 3 October (Saturday morning), Bolton will be brought into line with restrictions for the rest of Greater Manchester. Until that time, the current measures outlined in this guidance still apply.

Please see the guidance covering Greater Manchester, which sets out what restrictions will apply in Bolton from 3 October.

Local restrictions

Business and venue closures

The following businesses and venues must remain closed nationally, including in the affected local areas:

  • nightclubs, dance halls, and discotheques
  • sexual entertainment venues and hostess bars

In addition to this, the following businesses and venues must not open in Bolton:

  • casinos
  • indoor skating rinks
  • bowling alleys
  • indoor play areas, including soft play areas
  • exhibition halls and conference centres

We also advise that the following activity should not reopen or restart in Bolton:

Business restrictions

Hospitality venues must only provide take away food and drinks or delivery services to customers. Hospitality venues subject to these restrictions include:

  • restaurants, including hotel dining rooms and members clubs
  • cafes including workplace canteens (not including cafes or canteens at hospitals, care homes, schools, prisons, establishments intended for the use of naval, military or air force purposes and for providing food or drink to the homeless)
  • bars including bars in hotels or members clubs
  • pubs

Early business and venue closures

Across England, the following businesses and venues must close from 10pm to 5am each day except to deliver food or drinks or provide drive-through services. Take-away is not permitted during this time period.

  • hospitality venues listed above (now only operating as takeaways)
  • cinemas
  • theatres
  • bingo halls
  • concert halls
  • museums and galleries
  • betting shops
  • nail bars and salons, hair salons and barbers
  • tanning booths and salons
  • spas and beauty salons
  • massage parlours
  • tattoo and piercing parlours
  • amusement arcades or other indoor leisure centres or facilities
  • funfairs (indoors or outdoors), theme parks and adventure parks and activities
  • playgrounds
  • social clubs
  • aquariums and zoos, including safari parks
  • indoor attractions at visitor attractions

Cinemas, theatres or concert halls can stay open beyond 10pm to conclude a performance that has begun before 10pm, but they must close once the performance has concluded.

Businesses can be fined by local authorities or the police if they fail to fulfil the obligations placed on them in law, such as failing to comply with the requirement to operate as a take-away only, or failing to comply with the requirement to close between the hours of 22:00 and 5:00. Fines will be issued:

  • 1,000 for the first offence
  • 2,000 for the second offence,
  • 3,000 for the third offence
  • and then 10,000 for the fourth and all subsequent offences.

Social contact restrictions

If you live in Bolton, you must not:

  • host people you do not live with in your home or garden, unless theyre in your support or childcare bubble
  • meet people you do not live with in their home or garden, whether inside or outside the affected local areas, unless theyre in your support or childcare bubble

Your household is defined as the people you live with and any support or childcare bubble.

A support bubble is where a household with one adult joins with another household. Households within a bubble can still visit each other, stay overnight, and visit public places together.

A childcare bubble is where someone in one household can provide informal (i.e. unpaid and unregistered) childcare to a child aged 13 or under in another household. This must occur on an exclusive basis – always the same two households.

The police will be able to take action against those who break these rules, including asking people to disperse and issuing fixed penalty notices, starting at 200 for those who participate in illegal gatherings.

People aged over 18 or over can be fined:

  • 200 for the first offence, lowered to 100 if paid within 14 days.
  • 400 for the second offence, then doubling for each further offence, up to a maximum of 6,400.

The government has also introduced fines for those who hold illegal gatherings of over 30 people. Holding or being involved in the holding of an illegal gathering of more than 30 people is an offence, and police may issue fines of 10,000 to those who break the law.

People can still come inside your home or garden for specific purposes set out in law:

  • where everyone in the gathering lives together or is in the same support bubble
  • to attend a birth at the mothers request
  • to visit a person who is dying
  • to fulfil a legal obligation
  • for work purposes, (see guidance on working safely in other peoples homes or for the provision of voluntary or charitable services
  • for the purposes of education or training
  • for the purposes of childcare provided by a registered provider and informal childcare as part of a childcare bubble
  • to provide emergency assistance
  • to enable one or more persons in the gathering to avoid injury or illness or to escape a risk of harm
  • to facilitate a house move
  • to provide care or assistance to a vulnerable person
  • to continue existing arrangements for access to, and contact between, parents and children where the children do not live in the same household as their parents, or one of their parents

In line with national restrictions, when meeting friends and family you do not live with (or have formed a support bubble with) you must not meet in a group of more than 6 (in settings other than private dwellings, where the limit is a single household in Bolton). Further detail can be found in the guidance for meeting others safely, including associated exemptions.

If you live in the affected local area, we also advise that you should not:

  • meet with people you do not live with, unless theyre in your support bubble, in any public venue. This applies to inside and outside of Bolton. Examples of public venues include pubs, restaurants, cafes, shops, places of worship, community centres, leisure and entertainment venues, or visitor attractions. This also includes outdoor areas of these venues (such as a beer garden) and areas directly outside them, such as the pavement or road. This applies to visiting venues inside and outside of the affected areas.
  • visit friends or family in care homes, other than in exceptional circumstances. Care homes should restrict visits to these circumstances

Travel restrictions

You should follow all relevant transport guidance when making a journey into, within or out of Bolton.

You must wear a face covering on public transport, taxis and private hire vehicles (PHVs) and in substantially enclosed areas of transport hubs in England (as well as other indoor premises).

You will be breaking the law if you fail to do so and could be fined. Some people do not have to wear a face covering including for age, health, or disability reasons.

We advise that you should only travel for essential reasons when travelling into, within and out of Bolton. We encourage you to walk or cycle where possible and to plan your journey in advance, avoiding busy times and routes if possible. Examples of essential travel include:



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