Coronavirus (COVID-19) national restrictions

National restrictions remain in place in England due to coronavirus (COVID-19), meaning there are currently rules in place for what you can and cannot do.

In line with the government's roadmap out of lockdown, some restrictions changed from 12 April 2021.

Changes to restrictions from 12 April 2021

Stay at home restrictions are no longer in place, but many rules remain the same. You should continue to work from home if you can and minimise the number of journeys you make where possible, avoiding travel at the busiest times and routes.

  • You can meet in groups of six people or with one other household outdoors in a public area or private garden (social distancing rules still apply). You cannot meet indoors.

  • Non-essential retail and personal care services (eg hairdressers and nail salons) can open, as well as public buildings such as libraries and community centres.

  • Outdoor hospitality venues can open with table service only.

  • Indoor leisure and sports facilities can open for individual exercise or exercise with your household/support bubble.

  • Outdoor sports venues and facilities can open. You can take part in formally organised outdoor sport (this is sport that takes place under national governing body guidance) with any number of people.

  • Most outdoor attractions, including zoos, theme parks, and drive-in performances (eg cinemas) can open. Some smaller outdoor events such as fetes and fairgrounds can take place. 

  • Childcare and supervised activities are allowed indoors and outdoors for all children. Formally organised parent and child groups can take place indoors and outdoors for up to 15 attendees (children under five are not counted in this number).

  • Weddings, civil partnership ceremonies, wakes and other commemorative events can take place for up to 15 people. Wedding receptions can take place for up to 15 people, but must take place outdoors (not including in private gardens).

  • Overnight stays in England can take place with your household or support bubble in self-contained accommodation, eg a private holiday let

  • Care home residents can nominate two named individuals for regular indoor visits following a rapid lateral flow test. This is subject to the arrangements in place for each care home; contact your care home for further details.

What you should continue to do

To further reduce the rates of infection you should continue to:

  • follow the hands, face, space, fresh air guidance
  • only use public transport for essential purposes, such as travelling to school or work, getting food or medicine, or for health and wellbeing-related reasons, and try to minimise the number of journeys you take
  • minimise the number of people you're in contact with to reduce the risk of transmission
  • follow the guidelines and restrictions even if you've had your COVID-19 vaccination - this will help protect yourself and your friends, family and community (as you could still spread COVID-19 to others even if you’ve had your vaccine)

If you're clinically extremely vulnerable you're no longer advised to shield. However, you should continue to follow the guidance for people who are clinically extremely vulnerable and are advised to take additional precautions to protect yourself.

Household rules

You can socialise in groups of up to six people (from any number of households), or with one other household of any size (each household can include existing support bubbles if eligible):

  • in an outdoor public area
  • in a private garden

Indoor visits are not allowed.

Social distancing applies when meeting with people outside of your household.

Travelling out of the local area

The stay at home restrictions are no longer in place, however you're advised to minimise travel where possible. International holidays are not allowed.

Hospitality

Pubs, cafes and restaurants that have outdoor seating providing table service to customers can open. All people who attend these settings will have to register through the NHS Test and Trace scheme by scanning a QR code using the NHS COVID-19 app or providing contact details to the venue.

The rule of six applies in all hospitality settings, meaning you can visit an outdoor pub or restaurant in groups of up to six people at one time or with one other household. Social distancing rules apply at all times.

Non-essential retail

All shops offering non-essential goods, eg clothing shops, can open. You can visit these facilities with people in your household or support bubble in line with the current social contact rules.

It's a legal requirement for you to wear a face covering in indoor shops and shopping centres at all times unless you're exempt. Find out more about face coverings on GOV.UK.

Children and families

Parent and child groups can take place indoors and outdoors with up to 15 people in attendance (this number excludes children under five years old).

Childcare and supervised activities are allowed indoors and outdoors for all children.

For more information please contact our family centres.

Overnight stays

Overnight stays in self-contained accommodation are allowed in England with your household or support bubble. Self-contained accommodation are places that offer a private bathroom, entry/exit, self-catering and sleeping facilities, eg private holiday lets, caravans.

Overnight stays are not permitted in other people’s houses if they're not part of your support bubble. Find out more about support bubbles.

Sports

Indoor sports

Indoor sports and leisure facilities such as gyms and swimming pools can open. You can visit these facilities alone or with members of your household or support bubble.

You cannot exercise indoors with people you don’t live/are in a support bubble with.

Outdoor sports

Outdoor sports facilities such as tennis and basketball courts, and outdoor swimming pools, can open for use in line with wider social contact limits.

You can take part in informal outdoor sports and recreation in groups of up to six people or with another household. Social distancing must be followed at all times.

Organised outdoor sports for both adults and children can resume with any numbers, where this takes place under national governing body guidance.

Weddings, civil partnerships, wakes and commemorative events

Weddings, civil partnership ceremonies, wakes and other commemorative events can go ahead with 15 people attending (this limit doesn't include people who are working).

Wedding receptions can also take place for up to 15 people but must take place outdoors, not including private gardens. Social distancing guidelines must be followed at all times.

Find out about booking a ceremony in Barnsley.

Keeping up to date with the latest information

You can read the full national restrictions guidance on GOV.UK.

NHS.UK has lots of useful information about staying safe to prevent the spread of the virus and how to get a test if you start to have symptoms.

You can also follow us on Facebook or Twitter for the latest local coronavirus (COVID-19) updates.