COVID-19 Regulation changes from 22nd June 2020 - Questions and answers
Economy and Shopping
Can I travel as far as I want to go to the shops?
The legal requirement to stay local remains in place. As a rule of thumb this generally means not travelling more than five miles from home.
Can I go shopping with my friends?
Meeting with people from other households is only allowed outdoors while maintaining 2 metres distance, as the risk of transmission of the virus is much greater indoors. So you can only shop with people from other households outdoors, for example in outdoor markets (while still complying with social distancing practices). Indoor shopping should only be done alone or with people you live with. (Remember 5 mile limit).
Can I move home?
As of 22 June, it is a reasonable excuse to leave your local area or be indoors with other persons in order to:
- Move house
- Prepare a property for someone to move in
- Visit an estate or letting agent, developer sales office or show home in connection with the purchase, sale or rental of an unoccupied property
- View an unoccupied property with a view to buying or renting it
We are providing detailed guidance for the public and the industry about moving home. This will include recommendations about the thorough cleaning of properties that are for sale or rent to lower the risk of transmission of coronavirus.
Is it safe to send my child back to childcare?
Sending your child to childcare is low risk. We have published guidance to help settings prepare to increase the numbers of children they care for. Ultimately, it will be for parents to decide whether or not to send children to childcare.
How will social distancing work in a childcare setting?
Social distancing measures should be put in place as far is reasonably practical but this will be harder to maintain in a childcare setting with very young children. In these cases, infection prevention and control measures must be increased. We have published guidance for settings about how to implement these measures.
Please see further guidance for more information: protective measures in childcare settings: Keep Childcare Safe
What if my child is shielding?
Children who are in the shielding group because they have pre-existing medical conditions and have been advised to undertake shielding measures to protect them from contracting coronavirus, should not attend childcare settings at this time.
The scientific advice is that children should stay in the same small group when in school or in a childcare setting.
What does this mean for childcare and wrap around care?
Limiting social contacts is an important part of reducing the likelihood of seeing large outbreaks of the virus. It is important that we continue to reduce mixing between people and groups of people. Keeping people in small groups of children (and accompanying adults) which remain the same throughout the week, separate from other groups, helps to do this and avoids creating chains of transmission.
If a child attends more than one setting, for example school and wrap-around or out of school childcare, the child should remain in the same, small group in both settings wherever possible.
Will the Childcare Offer restart at the same time?
This remains suspended for new entrants until September 2020. Children who were previously receiving the childcare offer will continue to do so.
Will the funding for critical workers continue under the Coronavirus - Childcare Assistance Scheme?
We will continue to fund childcare costs for pre-school children of critical workers and pre-school aged vulnerable children, apart from any retention fees charged by childcare providers, until 31 August 2020 under the scheme.
Travel and tourism
Can I now go on holiday in Wales?
Preparations are underway to safely reopen the visitor economy, including self-contained accommodation and outdoor attractions. A decision will be taken about this at the next review of the regulations on 9 July. You will not be able to take a holiday in Wales until any change to the law is made. If a change to the law is made it is likely to take effect on 13 July.
Can I book holiday accommodation?
You are able to make a forward booking for a stay that takes place after 13 July 2020. However this will only be able to be fulfilled if the anticipated change to the law is made. The Welsh Government will continue to monitor the public health position and there is a risk any booking made may be cancelled. Please speak with your accommodation provider for information about their cancellation policy.
What kind of accommodation is being considered for re-opening?
Accommodation without shared facilities - this is accommodation, which is entirely self-contained with kitchens and bathrooms that no other guests use. This includes self-catering cottages and apartments and caravans with their own bathroom facilities.
Hotels and other serviced accommodation, for example B&Bs and hostels, which have ensuite rooms and can provide room service meals, also come into this category.
I have a holiday booked - can I travel to the airport?
No. For as long as the "stay local" requirement remains in place this is not a valid justification for leaving your local area. If you are due to travel before 6 July, you should cancel your trip and seek a refund. When the "stay local" requirements are removed, travel for holidays abroad will be allowed but this is subject to the rules of the country you wish to visit and to UK border regulations, which require a quarantine period of isolation on return from abroad. Advice issued by the Foreign, and Commonwealth Office should also be followed.
Ministers will lift the "stay local" requirement in two weeks' time on July 6, if conditions allow.
Faith and Ceremonies
Can I go to my place of worship?
Places of worship are allowed to open on 22 June for private prayer. This includes prayer with members of the same household.
Will my place of worship be open immediately?
Each place of worship can decide whether to open for these limited purposes. Some may decide not to open while others may decide to open at a slower pace or decide to continue using online technology to practice their faith. You should contact your place of worship to check if it is open before attending.
Visiting friends and family
What do you mean by "compassionate grounds" for visiting people?
You may have compassionate reasons for visiting someone where that person is suffering from a physical or mental illness; has suffered a bereavement or you are concerned about their wellbeing for other reasons, such as loneliness.
Other examples of things that may be permitted include visits to people living or staying in care homes, in supported living services, or in children's homes or young offender institutions. In each case, the service provider will need to put in place appropriate social distancing and safety measures before allowing visits, and you should contact them before travelling.
When will I be able to visit friends and family outside my local area more generally?
The Welsh Government keeps all the restrictions, including the requirement to stay local, under constant review. Given the improving picture, Ministers will lift the stay local requirement in two weeks' time on 6 July, if the conditions permit this.
Sport and outdoor activity
Which sport, leisure and recreation facilities are now open?
From 22 June, all outdoor sport and leisure facilities, with the exception of playgrounds and outdoor gyms are allowed to open. Facility operators are expected to take all necessary measures to manage risk and maintain social distancing.
But team sports, contact sports and large gatherings of people undertaking leisure or recreation activities are not allowed.
The type of facilities that can now re-open, subject to all other measures being met, include:
- outdoor tennis courts
- outdoor bowling greens
- outdoor basketball courts
- outdoor golf driving ranges
- outdoor cycling velodromes
- outdoor athletics tracks
- outdoor cricket nets
Which outdoor sport, leisure and recreation facilities must remain closed?
The coronavirus restrictions regulations set out the list of all businesses, which must be closed - these include playgrounds and outdoor gyms. Restrictions on gatherings mean that in practice managed sports pitches (such as 5 a side football pitches) cannot open.
Why are some indoor and outdoor facilities still not allowed to open?
We are learning more about the virus every day and we know the risk of transmission is lower outdoors than indoors. However, a lower risk doesn't mean no risk. Even in these circumstances it is vital we all maintain social distancing so we can continue to tackle the spread of this virus.
Some outdoor facilities carry a greater risk of transmission where surfaces or equipment are shared between people, such as playgrounds and outdoor gyms. Enclosed, managed, sports pitches should remain closed until team sports can resume.
Are basketball courts allowed to re-open?
Yes, but the restrictions on the number of people allowed to exercise together remain in place so team games are not permissible at this time. You can play on a court, alone or only with a member of your or one other household.
Are skate parks allowed to open?
All outdoor sport and leisure facilities, excluding playgrounds and outdoor gyms and enclosed sports pitches, are allowed to open if the facility operators are ready to open them. They should take all reasonable measures to manage risk and maintain social distancing. But team sports and gatherings of people from more than 2 households undertaking leisure or recreation activities together are not allowed.
Can elite athletes resume training?
Some elite athletes, such as our Olympic and Paralympic Games hopefuls, are now able to resume their training programmes. These athletes need to resume structured training and have access to appropriate facilities to properly prepare for the time when sporting competition resumes. Sport Wales will manage a programme for a small cohort of athletes who have been nominated to participate in the programme by their sport's national governing body.
There are strict protocols in place to allow athletes to train and prepare safely, without compromising their own health and the health and safety of others.
The changes to the regulations allow elite athletes to:
- travel for training in Wales and across UK
- train in small groups and to train with coaches from outside their household
- access facilities (for example swimming pools, boxing gyms, weight-lifting gyms, squash courts) for the purposes of undertaking training