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Rule of six, face masks and table service back for hospitality from Boxing Day, Mark Drakeford announces

22 Dec 2021 4 minutes Read
Photo by Louis Hansel @shotsoflouis on Unsplash. Mark Drakeford picture by Welsh Government.

A rule of six customers at a table, face masks and table service will be reintroduced in Wales from Boxing Day, the First Minister has announced.

In addition, large events will not be allowed indoors or outdoors. The maximum number of people who can gather at an indoor event will be 30 and 50 outdoors, with some exceptions.

Mark Drakeford said that the new measures were being introduced in order to respond to the new omicron variant and are designed to help keep businesses open and trading and protect customers and staff.

£120m will be available for nightclubs, retail, hospitality, leisure and tourism businesses affected by the move to alert level two – double the new £60m package announced last week. The Economy Minister will announce further details tomorrow.

“We are facing a very serious situation in Wales,” he said. “A wave of infections caused by the new, fast-moving and very-infectious omicron variant is headed our way.

“This new form of coronavirus could infect large numbers of people in Wales, disrupting daily lives and businesses and could cause an increase in the number of people who need hospital care in the coming weeks.

“We will do everything we can to protect people’s health and livelihoods in Wales – this means taking early action to try and control its spread.

“We are changing the rules for businesses and some public spaces, where lots of different people mix daily and issuing strong and clear advice to help people stay safe in their own private homes and when meeting others.”

‘Priority’

The new measures that be introduced from 6am on Boxing Day include:

  • A general requirement of 2m social distancing in all premises open to the public and workplaces, where reasonable.
  • The rule of six will apply to gatherings in regulated premises, such as hospitality, cinemas and theatres.
  • All licensed premises will need to take additional measures to protect customers and staff, including table service and collecting contact details.
  • Face coverings will be required in hospitality settings at all times apart from when seated.
  • Large events will not be allowed indoors or outdoors. The maximum number of people who can gather at an indoor event will be 30 and 50 outdoors.

There will be an exception for team sports, up to 50 spectators will be able to gather, in addition to those taking part. There is also an exception for events involving children.

The Welsh Government will not be making new rules about mixing in people’s private homes, including gardens, in holiday accommodation or meeting outdoors. Instead, guidance will be issued to help people stay safe.

They strongly advise everyone follows these five measures:

  • Limit the number of people visiting your home.
  • If people are visiting, make sure they take a lateral flow test in the morning before the visit.
  • Meeting outdoors is better than indoors. If you’re meeting indoors make sure it’s well ventilated.
  • Space out any visits, and don’t forget about social distancing and washing your hands.

There will be a separate offence for large gatherings – more than 30 people indoors or 50 people outdoors – in private homes and gardens.

The First Minister added: “The most important thing we can all do to protect ourselves against omicron is to be fully vaccinated – that means also having the booster. If you are eligible for a booster then please make getting it a priority in the coming weeks.

“As we enter our second winter of the pandemic, we have high vaccination coverage and tens of thousands of extra boosters are being given every day.

“We also have access to the rapid lateral flow tests to help us all identify signs of infection without symptoms.

“Both of these, together with everything we have learned over the last two years will help to keep us safe at home without the need for new rules and regulations about mixing at home.”

Last week new measures were announced for workplaces and retail – these will now come into force on Boxing Day. Nightclubs will also close on Boxing Day.


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Jack
Jack
6 months ago

“Meeting outdoors is better than indoors”

I agree with this which us why restrictions on outdoor events is a very odd decision.

Brian Coman
Brian Coman
6 months ago
Reply to  Jack

Pity he doesnt follow his own rules on crowds… Labour Party Conference and dancing at the Duwali celebrations

mike
mike
6 months ago
Reply to  Brian Coman

and not wearing mask at WNO

Carol Loughlin
Carol Loughlin
6 months ago
Reply to  Brian Coman

These rules don’t come into place until Boxing day. They weren’t in place at the time of the conference or the Diwali celebrations.

Robin Lynn
Robin Lynn
6 months ago
Reply to  Carol Loughlin

Nor at the WNO.

Dai Rob
Dai Rob
6 months ago

Good decisions…..these rules should never have been relaxed in the first place, whiulst the Pandemic is still ongoing!

mike
mike
6 months ago

and the sheep still vote for them

Robin Lynn
Robin Lynn
6 months ago
Reply to  mike

Baaaaaaaah

Barry Pandy
Barry Pandy
6 months ago
Reply to  Robin Lynn

Dear Robin

Ditto my reply to the Mike the Bigot.

Barry Pandy
Barry Pandy
6 months ago
Reply to  mike

Wow we’ve never heard that one before. Thank you Mike for your racist slur. Your lazy comment reflects not only your own bigotry but your complete lack of imagination and general lack of intelligence. I’d like to thank you again for your idiotic comment as it confirms that the people of Wales will be far better off as an independent nation free from bigoted little Ingerlanders like yourself. What you don’t realise is that every time bigots like you make comments like that all you do is reinforce our belief in Welsh independence. As for the ‘sheep’ still voting for… Read more »

Last edited 6 months ago by Barry Pandy
mike
mike
6 months ago

Sad we are stuck with these fools

Robin Lynn
Robin Lynn
6 months ago
Reply to  mike

“….strangely he took questions from journalists before taking questions from the politicians in the Sennedd.” Wonder from whom he learnt that.

Chris
Chris
6 months ago

Drakeford following the nazi form of national socialism, can’t win can we? labour, plaid, conservatives, all the same level of evil and self indulgent corruption

GVS
GVS
6 months ago

Thank you for sharing! Nice content

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