Executive tightens restrictions to curb COVID-19

October 14, 2020

The Executive has agreed a range of significant time-bound interventions to curb the spread of COVID-19 in Northern Ireland.

In addition to current household restrictions, the following measures will come into regulatory effect on Friday 16 October and will be in place for a period of four weeks:

  • Bubbling to be limited to a maximum of 10 people from two households;
  • No overnight stays in a private home unless in a bubble;
  • Closure of the hospitality sector apart from deliveries and takeaways for food, with the existing closing time of 11.00pm remaining. 
  • Other takeaway premises will be brought in line with hospitality with a closing time of 11.00pm;
  • Close contact services such as hairdressers and beauticians are not permitted to open, apart from those relating to the continuation of essential health interventions and therapeutics. 
  • No indoor sport of any kind or organised contact sport involving household mixing other than at elite level;
  • No mass events involving more than 15 people (except for allowed outdoor sporting events where the relevant number for that will continue to apply);
  • Gyms may remain open but for individual training only with local enforcement in place;
  • Funerals to be limited to 25 people with no pre- or post-funeral gatherings; 
  • Off licenses and supermarkets will not sell alcohol after 8.00pm;
  • Wedding ceremonies and civil partnerships to be limited to 25 people with no receptions.  This will be implemented on Monday 19 October.  Venues providing the post-ceremony or partnership celebration this weekend may remain open for this purpose but may not provide other services for people who are not part of the wedding or partnership party and this will be limited to 25;

And the following advice will be added to the existing health guidance:    

  • Work from home unless unable to do so;
  • Universities and further education to deliver distance learning to the maximum extent possible with only essential face to face learning where that is a necessary and unavoidable part of the course;
  • No unnecessary travel should be undertaken.

The half term holiday break for schools and colleges will be extended to a two-week break to run from 19 to 30 October. 

Places of worship will remain open with a mandatory requirement to wear face coverings when entering and exiting.  This will not apply to parties to a marriage or civil partnerships.

The retail sector will also stay open at this time. Further engagement is planned to ensure that the sector does everything it can to help suppress the virus.

You can read the full press release online at https://www.executiveoffice-ni.gov.uk/news/executive-tightens-restrictions-curb-covid-19