On 28 May, Boris Johnson, the Prime Minister, announced an update in relation to England’s lockdown restrictions, continuing the easing of Coronavirus social distancing measures.
From 1 June, people in England have been allowed to meet in groups of up to six people from different households in outdoor spaces such as private gardens or parks, as long as social distancing is maintained. The UK Government is now also encouraging people in England to take unlimited “amounts of outdoor exercise”. People in England have been permitted to exercise outside with up to five other people from different households. Basketball and tennis courts, bowling greens and golf courses have been re-opened, although gyms, swimming pools and playgrounds remain closed to the public.
Pupils in England have also now been permitted to gradually return to school, including those in Reception, Year 1 and Year 6. Secondary schools will seek to provide limited face-to-face contact time for Years 10 and 12. Furthermore, non-essential commercial spaces such as outdoor markets and car showrooms will start reopening from 1 June. Other businesses including clothing retail store, bookshops and auction houses will be able to reopen from 15 June, providing they are “Covid-secure”. The UK Government has released specific guidelines to ensure that workplaces and employers continue to maintain social distancing policies, and these will be enforced in all businesses that are due to reopen. Under the current timetable pubs, bars and some restaurants may be able to open from July 2020, although no official confirmation has yet been published.
Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland have also started to ease lockdown measures, and Gherson is able to provide further advice regarding the effect this may have on Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) Migrants, Tier 2 Migrants, Students and visitors.
In addition to the above, a mandatory two-week quarantine period will be implemented for any person who enters the UK on or after 8 June. Any migrant or British national entering the UK will be required to provide details in relation to their journey and contact details via an online form on the Home Office website [https://www.gov.uk/uk-border-control] before they travel to the UK. Travellers may be asked to show that they have completed the form when they arrive at the UK border. After they enter the UK, they will not be permitted to leave their place of residence, as stated on the form, for at least 14 days. Border Force officers at the port of entry will provide a choice of accommodation to those who do not have an appropriate place to safely self-isolate. Failure to adhere to the quarantine requirement may attract a fine of up to £1,000.
Certain categories of travellers are exempt from this mandatory two-week self-isolation measure – for example those arriving from within the Common Travel Area (Ireland, Isle of Man and Channel Islands) and who have been there for the last 14 days before entering the UK. However, even some of the categories of travellers who are exempt from this self-isolation measure will still be required to provide their journey and contact details.
If you are planning to visit the UK for a temporary stay, or if you are a returning migrant with a long-term visa, please do not hesitate to contact Gherson should you have any queries regarding the conditions attached to your leave and how these may be impacted by the UK’s COVID-19 policies.
Please note that the information in this blog is current at the date and time of posting. The situation regarding policy and guidance based on the COVID-19 pandemic is subject to change at short notice. We shall be monitoring all aspects of UK immigration which may be impacted by the coronavirus closely, so please do keep updated with further blogs and articles which we will be posting on this site.
The information in this blog is for general information purposes only and does not purport to be comprehensive or to provide legal advice. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the information and law is current as of the date of publication it should be stressed that, due to the passage of time, this does not necessarily reflect the present legal position. Gherson accepts no responsibility for loss which may arise from accessing or reliance on information contained in this blog. For formal advice on the current law please don’t hesitate to contact Gherson. Legal advice is only provided pursuant to a written agreement, identified as such, and signed by the client and by or on behalf of Gherson.