As those in Britain are getting used to being confined to the inside of their homes in an effort to bring down the spread of coronavirus, many have questions have been left somewhat open-ended, with lots wondering in what circumstances can they actually go outside?
Here’s everything you need to know about leaving your house during the Coronavirus lockdown in the UK.
Reasons You Can Leave Your Home
During a broadcast to the nation on Monday 23rd of March, the Prime Minister announced that people cannot leave their homes for any reason other than the following:
- Shopping for basic necessities
- One form of exercise per day – solo or with members of your household
- Medical needs
- Travel to work – but only if you absolutely cannot work from home
Can I Leave My House During The Weekends?
No, the Covid-19 emergency measures will apply for at least 3 weeks, and they include the weekends.
How Many People Can Visit The Supermarket?
According to official advice, the government is stopping all public gatherings of more than two people.
Parents can take their children to the shops with them, only if they cannot be left at home, however, some supermarkets including Asda and Sainsbury’s, are limiting the number of people allowed in stores at any one time, to enforce social distancing.
Many supermarkets, post offices, and chemists are also operating on a one in, one out basis.
Petrol stations, like corner shops, pharmacies, supermarkets, hardware stores, banks and bike shops, are able to stay open during the pandemic. Garages will also remain open for essential repair work.
Can I Still Care For My Elderly Relatives?
Yes, the UK Government says that people can leave home for any medical needs, including providing care or to help a vulnerabe person.
There is now separate advice on how vulnerable people should be shielded from the virus, including avoiding any face-to-face contact for 12 weeks and leaving all deliveries at the door.
Can I Stay At My Holiday Home During Lockdown?
The government has urged people to stay “in their primary residence” during the lockdown.
That means all visits to holiday homes, hotels, campsites, caravan parks or similar are advised against. All holidays in the UK are now advised against, as well as all international trips.
Government guidance states:
“Essential travel does not include visits to second homes, camp sites, caravan parks or similar, whether for isolation purposes or holidays.
“People should remain in their primary residence. Not taking these steps puts additional pressure on communities and services that are already at risk.”
Can I drive somewhere for a walk?
Under the new government guidance, people are allowed to go out once a day for exercise – but many are asking if they are allowed to drive to a scenic spot, country park to exercise or walk their dog?
“Stay local and use open spaces near to your home where possible – do not travel unnecessarily,” the guidance states.
“If you have a garden, make use of the space for exercise and fresh air.”
UK Police have also announced that they will be using checkpoints to stop vehicles and ask drivers where they are going.
Can I Excercise With Someone Who I Do Not Live With?
Unfortunately, not. The government has stated that our one form of exercise a day, which includes running, walking or cycling, can only be done alone or with people you live with.
This means that you should not be exercising – or cycling – with anyone outside your household.
What If I Don’t Comply With The Rules?
The government says every citizen must comply with the guidance set out and relevant authorities, including the police, have been given the power to enforce them – including fines and the power to disperse gatherings.
How Long Will Lockdown Last?
The measures came into force on Monday 23rd March and the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, said the rules will be reviewed after 3 weeks, but this depends on how successful we are in fighting the virus.
They will only be relaxed when the evidence shows that this is possible.