All non-essential shops to close as UK locks down

 

Prime minister Boris Johnson has issued some of the strictest measures to reduce social contact ever seen in the UK, coming close to announcing a full national lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Any public gathering of more than two people has been banned - excluding people you live with - and all non-essential shops must close. The Police will be given powers to issue fines and disperse groups.

The measures will be in place for a minimum of three weeks, when they will reviewed.

The prime minister said the Government would 'immediately close all shops selling non-essential goods' including clothing and electronic goods, and would close other gathering places such as libraries, outdoor gyms and places of worship.

In a broadcast speech, Mr Johnson said: 'From this evening I must give the British people a very simple instruction. You must stay at home. People will only be allowed to leave their home for the following very limited purposes:

  • 'shopping for basic necessities as infrequently as possible
  • 'one form of exercise a day - alone or with members of your household
  • 'any medical need to provide care or to help a vulnerable person
  • 'and travelling to work but only when this is absolutely essential and cannot be done from home.'

Weddings and baptisms and other ceremonies will also be stopped, but funerals will continue. Parks would remain open for exercise, Banks and Post Offices will also stay open.

Full guidance can be found here.

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