An outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19) has been identified in parts of Lancashire, Bolton and Blackburn with Darwen. The government and relevant local authorities are acting together to control the spread of the virus.
Restrictions apply to the specified areas below.
Affected local areas
- Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council area, with additional guidance and support applying in the following wards:
- Audley & Queens Park
- Bastwell & Daisyfield
- Billinge & Beardwood
- Blackburn Central
- Little Harwood & Whitebirk
- Roe Lee
- Shear Brow & Corporation Park
- Wensley Fold
- Blackpool Council area
- Burnley Borough Council area
- Chorley Borough Council area
- Fylde Borough Council area
- Hyndburn Borough Council area
- Lancaster City Council area
- Pendle Borough Council area, with additional guidance and support applying in the following wards:
- Clover Hill
- Preston City Council area
- Ribble Valley Borough Council area
- Rossendale Borough Council area
- South Ribble Borough Council area
- West Lancashire Borough Council area
- Wyre Borough Council area
From 3 October, additional restrictions will apply in the following areas:
- Halton Borough Council area
- Knowsley Metropolitan District Council area
- Liverpool City Council area
- Sefton Borough Council area
- St Helens Borough Council area
- Warrington Borough Council area
- Wirral Metropolitan District Council area
To understand which restrictions will apply from 3 October, please visit the guidance for Merseyside and Warrington. Until that time, the restrictions outlined in this guidance still apply.
Business and venue closures
The following businesses and venues must remain closed nationally, including in the affected areas:
- nightclubs, dance halls and discotheques
- sexual entertainment venues and hostess bars
Early business 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.
- cafes, restaurants, pubs, bars and cafes, including those located inside other premises (workplace canteens are not included if there is no practical alternative for staff at that workplace)
- bowling alleys
- amusement arcades or other indoor leisure centres or facilities (this does not include gyms and fitness studios)
- funfairs (indoors or outdoors), theme parks and adventure parks and activities
- bingo halls
- concert halls
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.
Hospitality venues must take reasonable steps to ensure:
- customers only consume food and drink while seated in the premises
- that if the business serves alcohol for consumption on the premises, orders are only taken from customers who are seated
- bookings are not accepted, or customers admitted onto the premises if groups include more than 6 people or only include one household if the group is larger than 6
- customers do not join in groups of more than 6 people or multiple households where a single household group is greater than 6 inside the premises (including outdoor areas such as beer gardens)
- tables are appropriately spaced to enable social distancing
Take-away orders can continue to be made at a counter or bar (as can orders inside venues that do not sell alcohol).
Hospitality venues subject to these restrictions include:
- restaurants, including restaurants and dining rooms in hotels or members clubs.
- bars, including bars in hotels or members clubs
- public houses
- social clubs
- cafes and workplace canteens ( other than specific exemptions, such as canteens in a hospital, care home, school, military establishments, or homeless shelters)
In the specific areas of Blackburn with Darwen listed above as under additional restrictions, we continue to advise that operators of hospitality venues (including restaurants, pubs, bars and cafes) should halt walk-ins, and only seat people who make reservations in advance.
Across England, unless you have an exemption, you must wear a face covering in a range of indoor premises. This now includes hospitality venues (bars, pubs, restaurants, cafes), except when eating or drinking.
Local authorities or the police can take action against businesses and venues who commit such offences.
Businesses can be fined by local authorities or the police if they fail to fulfill the obligations placed on them in law. This includes ensuring that people do not meet in their premises with people outside of their household or support bubble, ensuring that tables are appropriately spaced, that loud music isnt played, and that customers do not sing in non-household groups of more than 6, or dance. Fines will be issued:
- 1,000 for the first offence
- 2,000 for the second offence,
- 4,000 for the third offence
- 10,000 for the fourth and all subsequent offences.
If you live in one of the affected areas, in order to help prevent the spread of coronavirus 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 that 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 the national restrictions, when meeting friends and family you do not live with (or have formed a support bubble with) you must not meet