People can gather in groups of no more than six, according to new rules in place from next Monday.
The Prime Minister Boris Johnson said at a press briefing yesterday the new measures are to “prevent another wholesale national lockdown” as the virus continues to spread, particularly among young people.
Pubs and other venues are now also legally obliged to take every person’s details and forward to NHS track and trace.
The rule of six applies to indoors and outdoors and all ages. There are exceptions such as households that have more than six people. Weddings, funerals and organised team sports will also be exempt.
The PM said “Covid-secure” venues like places of worship, gyms, restaurants and hospitality venues will still be able to hold more than six people in total. However, pubs and restaurants can only allow people to attend in groups of six or less.
The Prime Minister said the new rules are aimed “simplifying and strengthening the rules” and “making them easier for everyone to understand”. Groups of up to 30 had been allowed to congregate previously.
He added that the police will have power to enforce the new rules: “The ban will be set out in law and it will be enforced by the police – anyone breaking the rules risks being dispersed, fined and possibly arrested.”