Tier 3 from 00:01 on Wednesday 16th December

Health Secretary Matt Hancock has confirmed Greater London will be Tier 3 from 00:01 on Wednesday.


The London weekly case rate at 225 per 100,000 people is already the highest regional rate in the country.


Along with London, many areas of Essex and south Hertfordshire will also be subject to Tier 3 restrictions from Wednesday.


Addressing the House of Commons this afternoon, the Health Secretary said: “I know this is difficult news and I know it will mean plans disrupted, and that for businesses affected, it will be a significant blow.


“But this action is absolutely essential, not just to keep people safe, but because we’ve seen early action can help prevent more damaging and longer lasting problems later.


“Because when the virus moves quickly, we must move quickly too and we must take the actions that are not necessarily easy, but are effective.


The government is still planning to make further announcements on Wednesday regarding changes to restrictions in other regions of the country, Mr Hancock added this evening at a Downing Street press conference.


You can read Mr Hancock’s statement to the Commons here.


Business evictions ban extended until March 2021

Business owners affected by the pandemic will be protected from eviction until the end of March 2021. Further guidance to support negotiations between landlords and tenants will also be published shortly. A review of commercial landlord and tenant legislation has also been announced, to address concerns that the current framework does not reflect the current economic conditions. More information is available here.


Latest grant guidance released

The government has provided detailed guidance about many of the grants available from local authorities for businesses affected by local restrictions. They include:


LRSG (Closed) Addendum grant: Businesses required to close due to national lockdown restrictions will receive grants of up to £3,000 per 28-day period.


Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG): The (ARG) provides additional funding for local authorities subject to national lockdown or Tier 3 restrictions, to support businesses that have had their trade affected by the restrictions. This includes:

  • closed businesses that don’t pay business rates
  • businesses that have not been required to close, but are still severely impacted
  • each local authority has the discretion to establish business grant schemes or other business support as best fits their area.


Local Restrictions Support Grant (Open): Where local authorities have been subject to Tier 2 or Tier 3 restrictions, this grant allows local authorities to make discretionary payments to support businesses that were impacted by the restrictions, but not required to close.


LRSG (Sector) provides grants of up to £3,000 per 28-day period to be made to businesses like nightclubs that were required to close on a national basis since 23 March 2020.


Christmas Support Payment for wet-led pubs: The Christmas Support Payment grant provides funding for local authorities subject to Tier 2 or Tier 3 restrictions in December 2020 to pay one-off grants of £1,000 to wet-led pubs. These are pubs that predominantly serve alcohol rather than food and have been severely impacted over the festive season due to temporary local restrictions. Check if you’re eligible.


Full details on the grants can be found here.




Extension to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

This scheme has been extended until the end of March 2021. The full guidance for claims from November onwards, including how you can check if you’re eligible and how to calculate and make a claim online, can be found here.


Working safely during coronavirus updates

  • For restaurants, pubs, bars and takeaway – guidance on Tier 3 restrictions to clarify that customers can enter the premises to place or collect any type of order between 5am and 11pm has been updated.
  • Labs and research facilities page has been updated to clarify that workplace canteens open to staff only do not need to collect data for NHS Test and Trace
  • Shops and branches – updated guidance to clarify that betting shops must keep a record of all customers, visitors and staff and that workplace canteens open to staff only do not need to collect data for NHS Test and Trace


What you can and cannot do in areas in Tier 1 and Tier 2 local restrictions

Check updated information on visiting venues and added links to guidance on which businesses and venues are permitted to be open in both Tier 1 and Tier 2:


Guidance for businesses and organisations on how to recognise, contain and report incidents of coronavirus

This page has been updated with a section ‘Early outbreak management action card example’.


PPE portal – How to order PPE

Eligible health and social care providers can order PPE through the portal to meet the increased need that has arisen as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The current order limits for different types and sizes of eligible health and social care providers can be found here.


Health and wellbeing of the adult social care workforce

This page has been updated to reflect current guidance on health and wellbeing and the new local tier restrictions. This advice is for those working in adult social care on managing their mental health and how employers can take care of the wellbeing of their staff during the coronavirus outbreak.


« All News