follow us on twitter @elitebizmag find us on facebook connect with us on linkedin 

Prime Minister confirms end to month-long lockdown with “tougher” three-tier restrictions: What does this mean for businesses?

Written by Latifa Yedroudj on Wednesday, 25 November 2020. Posted in Politics, Analysis

All shops, gyms and hairdressers will reopen on December 2, but tougher restrictions will apply to different regions depending on their tiers

Prime Minister confirms end to month-long lockdown with “tougher” three-tier restrictions: What does this mean for businesses?

All shops, gyms and hairdressers will reopen on December 2, but tougher restrictions will apply to different regions depending on their tiers

As the pandemic continues to sweep the UK, the government is now taking steps to determine the fate of the country. Prime Minister Boris Jonhson confirmed the lockdown in England will officially end on December 2, but “tougher” three-tiered restrictions will be implemented across various regions depending on several other factors. How will SMEs be affected?

On Monday, Mr Johnson announced all gyms, non-essential shops and beauty salons will open next month as the month-long lockdown comes to an end. However, he informed the Commons that three-tiered regional measures will return from December 2 - but the rules in each tier will be stricter than before

Businesses will be able to open their doors once again and welcome customers after lockdown ends – but this is dependent on which tier the region is placed in. The allocation of tiers will be dependent on a number of factors, including each area's case numbers, the reproduction rate - or R number - and the current and projected pressure on the NHS locally. Tier allocations will be reviewed every 14 days, and the regional approach will last until March.

Mr Johnson warned that "more regions will fall - at least temporarily - into higher levels than before" and that he was "very sorry" for the "hardship" that such restrictions would cause business owners. The "Covid winter plan" is expected to place more areas into the higher tiers to keep the virus under control to ensure further restrictions are not needed, No 10 said. While some local measures will be the same as those in the previous system, some tiers will be strengthened to safeguard the gains made during the national lockdown.

Under tier 3 measures, the highest tier, essential shops, swimming pools and leisure centres, beauty salons, places of worship, universities and gyms will be open, but exercise classes are banned. Pubs, restaurants and bars will only be open for takeaway, delivery or click and collect. Wedding receptions and live events will be banned.

Under tier 2, pubs and restaurants are allowed to stay open and customers will be allowed to dine-in as long as they serve a substantial meal with any alcohol sold. The 10pm closing time curfew will also be extended to 11pm. Casinos, cinemas, bowling alleys, theatres, soft play areas, museums and galleries can also open. Live events will be allowed limited to 50% capacity.

Under tier 1, the lowest tier, all businesses are allowed to operate as long as they are COVID-19 secure, with the exception of nightclubs, which have been closed since March. Restaurants and pubs that are open for dine-in in tier 1 can only operate a table-service, so you won't be able to order at the bar. Weddings are allowed with a maximum of 15 guests and funerals can only hold a maximum of 30 people.

Under all three tiers, the government has advised people to continue working from home when possible. Measures in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland continue to be decided by the devolved administrations, but they will be announcing a joint approach to Christmas later in the week. The prime minister said: "I can't say that Christmas will be normal this year, but in a period of adversity time spent with loved ones is even more precious for people of all faiths and none. "We all want some kind of Christmas; we need it; we certainly feel we deserve it. But this virus obviously is not going to grant a Christmas truce… and families will need to make a careful judgement about the risks of visiting elderly relatives."

After a month-long battle, lockdown will now be coming to an end. However, not all businesses will be able to open their doors as this is dependent on the tier-three restrictions which will be announced on Thursday.

About the Author

Latifa Yedroudj

Latifa Yedroudj

Latifa Yedroudj has joined the Elite team to fully immerse herself in the business side of journalism, a strong passion of hers cultivated from young having co-run her mother's start up business since she was 18. Her interests lie in a wide range of subjects, including start ups, business, travel, and anything entrepreneurial she can get her hands on. She has worked for some of the biggest names in journalism including The Guardian and The Mirror. Follow her on @latifayed on Twitter for her latest journo rants.

Our Partners

Event Media Partners