Following yesterday announcement, there have been updates to the Government guidance. It is important that you read the updates, here is the key information so far:
There will be a four-week pause at Step 3. Step 3 restrictions remain in place, and you should follow the guidance on what you can and cannot do. It is expected that England will move to Step 4 on 19 July, though the data will be reviewed after 2 weeks in case the risks have reduced.
However, some restrictions will change on 21 June. From 21 June, there will be changes to the rules on:
- weddings and civil partnership ceremonies and wedding receptions or civil partnership celebrations
- commemorative events following a death such as a wake, stone setting or ash scattering
- large events pilots
Weddings, civil partnerships and commemorative events from 21 June
From 21 June, the rules on the number of people who can attend a wedding or civil partnership ceremony, a wedding reception or civil partnership celebration, and a commemorative event following a funeral such as a wake, stone setting or ash scattering, will change.
The number of people who can attend these events in a COVID-Secure venue or other venue (such as a garden of a private home) will be determined by how many people a venue can safely accommodate with social distancing measures in place, including guests of all ages and anyone working at the event.
A marquee or other structure in a private garden of a private home must have at least 50% of its walled area open at any time for it to be classed as “outdoors”, and for the limit based on safe capacity to apply.
Inside private homes, and in enclosed structures in gardens of private homes, weddings can only be held in line with broader social contact rules of up to 6 people or 2 households, except in the case of an urgent marriage where one of those getting married is seriously ill and not expected to recover (‘deathbed weddings’). These can take place in private dwellings with up to 30 people.
Some restrictions on these events will remain in place to enable them to take place safely. This includes table service requirements, face coverings, social distancing, and restrictions on dancing and singing, as at present.
For those organising weddings in gardens of private homes or on private land, you will need to make your chosen venue as safe as possible. If you plan on having more than 30 people, you must complete a COVID-19 risk assessment to determine how many attendees will be able to attend, and follow Government guidance to make the event as safe as possible. Guidance on how to complete the risk assessment will be provided.
The guidance on wedding and civil partnership ceremonies, receptions and celebrations will be updated by 15 June. The guidance on arranging or attending a funeral during the coronavirus pandemic will be updated by 17 June.
Large events pilots from 21 June
A limited series of pilot events will take place to produce additional evidence on reopening events safely. Attendees will need to show proof of vaccination or a recent negative test.
This will include some UEFA EURO 2020 matches at Wembley and a small number of other sports, arts and music performances. The full list of pilots, and further details about the events, will be announced shortly.
Current guidance for events – step 3 of the roadmap
You can find the guidance for events here
Events that are able to commence from Step 3 include those where:
- People are likely to congregate in one area for the duration of the event.
- People are likely to enter or leave the venue in large numbers at a similar time.
This could include events and activities such as:
- business events such as conferences, trade shows, exhibitions, charity auctions, and private dining events such as charity or gala dinners and awards ceremonies, and corporate hospitality
- live performances[footnote 3]
- air shows
- historical /battle re-enactments
- live animal performances such as falconry displays at events
- non-elite and professional sporting events
- grassroots and professional sporting events
Event organisers will need to adhere to the three requirements set out at the start of this guidance. This includes the need to follow the relevant COVID-secure guidance, taking reasonable steps to limit the risk of transmission, completing a related risk assessment, and adhering to all legal requirements, including ensuring that those attending an event do not mix beyond what is permitted by social contact limits.
These social contact limits for permitted organised gatherings will be:
- Indoors– rule of 6 or 2 households
- Outdoors– 30 people
- Organised sport– exempt from social contact limits
Organisers should also mitigate risk to public health by controlling attendance, limiting numbers to take account of the space and ventilation of a venue and implementing effective infection prevention and control measures.
All events at Step 3 will be subject to the following capacity caps:
- 1,000 people or 50% of a venue’s capacity, whichever is lower at indoor events
- 4,000 people or 50% of a site or venue’s capacity, whichever is lower at outdoor events
The government has also made a special provision for large, outdoor seated venues where crowds can be safely distributed around the venue, allowing up to 10,000 people or 25% of total seated capacity, whichever is lower. This provision can be used by venues with a seated capacity of 16,000 or above. For events with mixed seating and standing areas including music, elite sporting events and non-elite/professional spectator events, the capacity cap will be calculated as 25% of seated capacity, irrespective of any standing capacity. All spectators admitted under this provision must be seated and should not access the venue’s standing capacity to view the event. Where the crowds cannot be seated at a large outdoor venue for the duration of the event or the seated capacity does not exceed 16,000 the cap of 50% of the site’s capacity up to a maximum of 4,000 people will apply.
All capacity restrictions must be adhered to at any point throughout the event. For example, a theatre can admit over 1,000 people in a single day, but no more than 1,000 people at one time. If an event runs over the course of multiple days, no more than 1,000 people should be admitted at any one time over that period. If a single venue hosts multiple different events at one time, and the attendees of each event are separated for the duration of the event (for example, a cinema with multiple screens, or an exhibition centre hosting multiple business events), the 50% capacity cap will apply to each individual event, rather than the venue.
This should be applied consistently across all types of events apart from grassroots organised sports participants events which are not subject to the limits on participants, but they are still subject to limits on spectators.
For those events subject to capacity caps, it should be noted that the caps refer to the event attendees only. Staff, workers and volunteers are covered by the work exemption so should not be counted as part of the capacity cap. This includes:
- delivery staff
- operational team (such as reception, maintenance, cleaning security & stewarding and ticketing staff)
- caterers and concession stand staff
- presentation/production team
- exhibitors, speakers, musicians and performers
This should be applied consistently across all types of events.
Events which cannot take place until further notice
An event cannot take place in either Step 2 or Step 3 if it is unlikely that social distancing between groups of attendees can be maintained, or if other COVID-secure requirements cannot be met. This may be the case for events such as music festivals and carnivals. This guidance varies according to the type of event and could include outdoor events, performing arts or sports events. A full list of guidance is provided in the Existing guidance section.
If an event falls into this category, event organisers should approach local authorities to look at identifying whether any adjustments to the format of the event can be made to enable the event to go ahead. This may include the use of seating or barriers to ensure that attendees maintain an appropriate distance.
The current guidance for Hospitality remains at step 3 for the time being, you can find the guidance here:
If you’re in an area where the new COVID-19 variant (known as Delta) is spreading:
This new variant is sometimes referred to as the Delta variant. It is spreading fastest in the following areas:
- Bedford Borough Council
- Birmingham City Council
- Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council
- Blackpool Council
- Cheshire East Council
- Cheshire West and Chester Council
- Greater Manchester Combined Authority(Bolton, Bury, Manchester, Oldham, Rochdale, Salford, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford, Wigan)
- Kirklees Council
- Lancashire County Council(Burnley, Chorley, Fylde, Hyndburn, Lancaster, Pendle, Preston, Ribble Valley, Rossendale, South Ribble, West Lancashire, Wyre)
- Leicester City Council
- Liverpool City Region Combined Authority(Halton, Knowsley, Liverpool, Sefton, St Helens, Wirral)
- London Borough of Hounslow
- North Tyneside Council
- Warrington Borough Council
The new COVID-19 variant (known as Delta) spreads more easily than the other variants that were previously most common. To help stop the spread, you should:
- Get both doses of the vaccine when you are offered it, and encourage others to do so as well
- Participate in surge testing in your local area, whether you are vaccinated or not
- Self-isolate immediately if you have any symptoms of COVID-19 (a high temperature, a new, continuous cough or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste) or if you’ve tested positive for COVID-19
In the areas listed above, you should also take particular caution when meeting anyone outside your household or support bubble. Wherever possible, you should try to:
- Meet outside rather than inside where possible
- Keep 2 metres apart from people that you do not live with (unless you have formed a support bubble with them), this includes friends and family you don’t live with
- Minimise travel in and out of affected areas
You should also:
- Get tested twice a week for free and isolate if you are positive
- Continue to work from home if you can
- Refer to local health advice for your area (linked above)
You should get tested for COVID-19. This includes:
- Arranging to have a PCR test if you have symptoms of COVID-19
- Getting regular rapid lateral flow tests if you do not have symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19)
- Arranging a testing or managed quarantine package if you plan to travel overseas. See further details
- You should self-isolate immediately if you have symptoms or a positive test result for COVID-19. There is financial support if you’re off work because of coronavirus.
Here is a link to the full current guidance: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus