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Easing lockdown and getting back to business

Prime Minister Boris Johnson set out further changes to lockdown measures in England to enable people to see more of their friends and family, help businesses get back on their feet and get people back in their jobs.

From Saturday 4th July, the Prime Minister has announced that:

  1. Pubs, restaurants and hairdressers will be able to reopen, providing they adhere to COVID Secure guidelines – updates guidance can be found further down the page.
  2. Two households will be able to meet up in any setting with social distancing measures – updated guidance on social distancing can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/staying-alert-and-safe-social-distancing/staying-alert-and-safe-social-distancing-after-4-july
  3. People can now enjoy staycations in England with the reopening of accommodation sites – guidance on opening up the visitor economy can also be found below in the sector guides.
  4. In order to begin restoring the arts and cultural sector, some leisure facilities and tourist attractions may also reopen, if they can do so safely – this includes outdoor gyms and playgrounds, cinemas, museums, galleries, theme parks and arcades, as well as libraries, social clubs, places of worship and community centres – guidance on opening up the visitor economy can also be found below in the sector guides.

Following a review, the Prime Minister has also set out that where it is not possible to stay two metres apart, guidance will allow people to keep a social distance of ‘one metre plus’. This means staying one metre apart, plus mitigation which reduce the risk of transmission.

Working safely during COVID-19

The government, in consultation with industry, has announced a three-stage approach to getting people in England back to work. From 13 May, certain restrictions will be lifted to allow those who cannot work from home to return to work if it is safe to do so.  

The government has published a series of guidance papers to help employers, employees and the self-employed understand how to work safely during the coronavirus pandemic. 

These 8 guides cover a range of different types of work. Many businesses operate more than one type of workplace, such as an office, factory and fleet of vehicles. You may need to use more than one of these guides as you think through what you need to do to keep people safe. 

Reviewing the above and existing statutory guidance, Be the Business have provided useful guidance for employees and employers relating to health and safety, PPE, commuting, many aspects around social distancing, and workplace cleaning.  

Be the Business Covid-19 workplace and commuting guidance

Better Business for All (BBfA) have prepared a Covid-19 Toolkit to help guide you through to restarting your business safely – BBFA Covid-19 Toolkit

Support from Regulatory Services

North Somerset Council’s regulatory services teams have written some FAQ documents relating to food and safety and licensing to support effective decision making in the hospitality and leisure sector. There is also some sign posting information for business from the trading standards team. 

Licensing FAQs

Food and Safety FAQs

The FAQ’s outline support for various licence holders.  should you need to apply for a specific licence please contact the Licensing Team for further advice and clarification.

Planning and licensing laws will be relaxed to help the hospitality industry recover from the coronavirus lockdown, the note below gives outline of these proposals.

Business and Planning Bill to aid COVID-19 reopening

The best place to find COVID-specific guidance in relation to Trading Standards matters is via the Business Companion website at: https://www.businesscompanion.info/focus/coronavirus-covid-19

This site carries information in specific thematic areas (presently headed “Travel”, “Food” and “Housing and Home Improvements”) along with a fourth area which collates a wide range of advisory guidance.

In light of the present practice of moving away from cash transactions, businesses will also wish to be aware of the additional guidance, provided via the link below, which explains that debit/credit card surcharges are not permitted: https://www.businesscompanion.info/en/quick-guides/pricing-and-payment/payment-surcharges

If you require any guidance in relation to a Trading Standards matter which is not covered by the above, please e-mail the team at trading.standards@n-somerset.gov.uk

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