What are the different Covid-19 restrictions affecting many UK towns and cities?

A raft of rules have been brought in by the Government in an effort to curb the spread of coronavirus.

Drinkers stand within rings marked on the grass to maintain their social distance outside a bar in Canary Wharf, east London
Drinkers stand within rings marked on the grass to maintain their social distance outside a bar in Canary Wharf, east London

Many parts of the UK are subject to some kind of lockdown in an effort to try to control the spread of coronavirus.

Tougher restrictions legally banning people from mixing with other households in any indoor setting, including pubs and restaurants, are being introduced in Durham, Gateshead, Newcastle, North Tyneside, South Tyneside, Northumberland and Sunderland from midnight on Wednesday.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the existing measures in these parts of north-east England are being tightened, at the request of local councils.

They had been agreed in response to high and increasing infection rates in these areas, with incidence rates over 100 per 100,000 in six of the seven areas last week, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) said.

It had already been illegal for two households to mix inside or in a garden, but it was only guidance that they should not meet at public venues, including restaurants and pubs.

The new measures will be enforceable with fines, the DHSC said.

Monday’s update of the rolling seven-day rate of new cases of Covid-19 for every local authority area in England puts Knowsley at the top of the list.

Knowsley had the highest rate in England, with 422 new cases recorded in the seven days to September 25 – the equivalent of 279.7 cases per 100,000 people.

Workers from the live entertainment sector join a silent protest in Parliament Square, London, calling for immediate support from the Government for the jobs in the events, arts and cultural industry that are at risk of being lost whilst the sector is unable to operate under coronavirus restrictions
Workers from the live entertainment sector protest in Parliament Square, London (Victoria Jones/PA)

This was up from 152.5 in the seven days to September 18.

Burnley had the second highest rate, up sharply from 157.4 to 269.9 with 240 new cases.

Liverpool was in third place, where the rate has jumped from 165.4 to 262.2 with 1,306 new cases.

These are among a range of regions whose residents have been told not to meet other households indoors or in private gardens and they are allowed essential travel only.

Similar rules have applied in locations including Rossendale, Hyndburn, South Ribble, West Lancashire, Chorley, Wyre, Fylde, Lancaster, Ribble Valley, Wirral, St Helens, Sefton, Halton and Warrington since September 22.

The highest rates of infection were recorded in the North West and Yorkshire and Humber, while sharp rises were noted in Merseyside and Tyneside, according to Public Health England.

Coronavirus – Fri Sep 11, 2020
A social distancing sign in Leeds city centre, West Yorkshire (Danny Lawson/PA)

Residents in Oadby and Wigston, Leeds, Bradford, Calderdale and Kirklees must avoid socialising with other households in public venues or meeting them indoors or in private gardens.

Anyone living in areas including Bury, Manchester, Rochdale, Salford, Tameside, Trafford, Blackpool, Stockport, Wigan, Birmingham, Sandwell, Solihull, Wolverhampton and Leicester must not mix with people outside of their household either indoors or in a private garden.

They have also been told to avoid socialising with other households in public venues.

Bolton residents also have to deal with rules stopping them from meeting other households indoors or in a private garden and socialising with people they do not live with in public venues.

They have also been told to only make essential travel journeys and hospitality venues can only serve take-away food.

The regions of Neath Port Talbot, Torfaen and the Vale of Glamorgan in South Wales went into local lockdown on Monday from 6pm, which means people are not able to enter or leave these areas without a reasonable excuse.

They are not able to meet indoors with anyone they do not live with, and extended households have been suspended.

Coronavirus – Fri Jul 31, 2020
Yellow markings along the pedestrianised area of Cardiff city centre aid social distancing (Ben Birchall/PA)

Restrictions were already in place in areas including Cardiff, Swansea, Llanelli, Blaenau Gwent, Bridgend, Caerphilly, Merthyr Tydfil, Newport, and Rhondda Cynon Taf.

People across Scotland have been told not to meet anyone from another household indoors.

Students in Scotland were told they can return home from university accommodation on a long-term basis, as long as they follow rules on self-isolating.

Households across Northern Ireland are not allowed to mix indoors and non-essential travel outside the area is not allowed.

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