Coronavirus latest: Hemel Hempstead will be in 'high' Tier 2 - here's everything you need to know

The new rules will come into effect on December 2

Thursday, 26th November 2020, 1:14 pm

Dacorum and Hertfordshire have been placed in Tier 2 in the government's three tier system, and the new rules will come into effect on Wednesday, December 2.

The decision has just been announced by Health Secretary Matt Hancock.

The new rules will come into effect from the beginning of Wednesday, December 2. The current national restriction rules are still in place until December 2, and must be followed until they expire.

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There are 3 tiers for local restrictions, Tier 1: Medium alert; Tier 2: High alert; Tier 3: Very High alert.

Tier 2: High alert. In tier 2:

- You must not socialise with anyone you do not live with or who is not in your support bubble in any indoor setting, whether at home or in a public place

- You must not socialise in a group of more than 6 people outside, including in a garden or a public space – this is called the ‘rule of 6’

- Businesses and venues can continue to operate, in a COVID-Secure manner, other than those which remain closed by law, such as nightclubs

- Pubs and bars must close, unless operating as restaurants. Hospitality venues can only serve alcohol with substantial meals

- Hospitality businesses selling food or drink for consumption on their premises are required to:

Provide table service only, in premises which sell alcohol

Close between 11pm and 5am (hospitality venues in airports, ports, transport services and motorway service areas are exempt)

Stop taking orders after 10pm

- Hospitality businesses and venues selling food and drink for consumption off the premises can continue to do so after 10pm as long as this is through delivery service, click-and-collect or drive-through

- Early closure (11pm) applies to casinos, cinemas, theatres, museums, bowling alleys, amusement arcades, funfairs, theme parks, adventure parks and activities, and bingo halls. Cinemas, theatres and concert halls can stay open beyond 11pm in order to conclude performances that start before 10pm

- Public attendance at outdoor and indoor events (performances and shows) is permitted, limited to whichever is lower: 50% capacity, or either 2,000 people outdoors or 1,000 people indoors

- Public attendance at spectator sport and business events can resume inside and outside, subject to social contact rules and limited to whichever is lower: 50% capacity, or either 2,000 people outdoors or 1,000 people indoors

- Places of worship remain open but you must not socialise with people from outside of your household or support bubble while you are indoors there, unless a legal exemption applies

- Weddings and funerals can go ahead with restrictions on numbers of attendees – 15 people can attend wedding ceremonies and receptions, 30 people can attend funeral ceremonies, and 15 people can attend linked commemorative events such as wakes or stonesettings.

- Organised outdoor sport, and physical activity and exercise classes can continue

- Organised indoor sport, physical activity and exercise classes will only be permitted if it is possible for people to avoid mixing with people they do not live with (or share a support bubble with). There are exceptions for indoor disability sport, sport for educational purposes and supervised sport and physical activity for under-18s, which can take place with larger groups mixing.

You can continue to travel to venues or amenities which are open, but should aim to reduce the number of journeys you make where possible

If you live in a tier 2 area, you must continue to follow tier 2 rules when you travel to a tier 1 area. Avoid travel to or overnight stays in tier 3 areas other than where necessary, such as for work, education, youth services, to receive medical treatment, or because of caring responsibilities.You can travel through a tier 3 area as a part of a longer journey

David Williams, Leader of Hertfordshire County Council, said: “It has been announced that following the end of the national lockdown, Hertfordshire as a whole will move into Tier 2: High Alert, in the Government's new system of Covid-19 Alert Levels.

"We have been in ongoing dialog with the Government and this decision is based on a series of indicators that reflect the continued prevalence of the virus in the county.

“In recent weeks we have been working closely with the NHS, and Hertfordshire’s District and Borough councils in preparation for the end of the national lockdown.

"As such, we are well prepared to continue supporting our communities to come through the new level of restrictions.

“We understand that being in Tier 2 will bring concerns for many.

"These will include the restriction on socialising with anyone you do not live with or who is not in your support bubble in any indoor setting, as well as the economic consequences, especially for our hospitality sector.

“So now it is more important than ever that we re-double our efforts to ensure that the recent downward trend in our infection rates is sustained in order to secure a move to Tier 1 as soon as possible.

“I would like to extend my sincere thanks to all Hertfordshire residents who have continued to play their part over the last month by adhering to the national restrictions.

"However, the virus is still circulating widely in the community, and we must not let our guard down in the run up to the festive period.

“The recent announcement of a vaccine marks a significant step forward in the fight against Covid-19, yet we cannot afford to be complacent. We must all continue to take responsibility to lower the risks in our day-to-day lives by playing our part - keeping up the basics of hand-washing, social distancing and wearing face-masks, getting a test if you develop symptoms and self-isolating when required – and now following the restrictions which apply to Tier 2.”

The system will be regularly reviewed and an area's tier may change before Christmas - the first review is scheduled for December 16.

You will be able to use the postcode checker to find out the restrictions in your area or an area you plan to visit. The NHS COVID-19 app will be updated on 2 December.

For more details visit: www.gov.uk.