This bulletin is issued by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and provides the latest information for employers and businesses on coronavirus (COVID-19). All coronavirus business support information can be found at gov.uk/business-support


UK Government announces further easing of restrictions for businesses in England

Close contact services to reopen in England from 15 August

Close contact services that includes hairdressers, barbers, beauticians, tattooists, sports and massage therapists, dress fitters, tailors and fashion designers can reopen in England from 15 August 2020. All services, including those in the highest risk zone, can resume from 15 August 2020. The high-risk zone is considered the area in front of the face where splashes and droplets from the nose and mouth may be present. This includes treatments like eyebrow threading and make-up application.

  • To offer these services an update on wearing PPE has been provided. The person providing a close contact service (such as hairdressers or beauticians), working in close proximity to a person’s face, mouth and nose, should wear a clear visor and a Type II Face Mask. Type II face masks are medical face masks made up of a protective 3-ply construction.
  • From 8 August, face coverings were made mandatory for customers visiting nail, beauty, and hair salons; barbers; massage parlours; tattoo and piercing parlours. Face coverings should not be removed unless essential for a particular treatment – for example, on the face area covered by the mask.

This does not apply to businesses based in regions that are in a local lockdown. See the updated guidance for further information.

Performances allowed indoors and outdoors (with a limited socially distanced audience indoors)

Stage Four of the five step roadmap permits performances indoors and outdoors (but with a limited socially-distanced audience indoors). Socially distanced indoor and outdoor performances can take place in line with this guidance, though we encourage organisations to continue to work outdoors wherever possible. In addition, musicians, dancers and actors, and the technical and operational teams that support performing arts production, can resume training, rehearsals and recorded performances where organisations wish and are able to.  See the updated guidance for further information.

Dance studios can also reopen and should follow guidance for providers of grassroots sport and gym/leisure facilities.

Additional businesses and venues will be permitted to reopen from 15 August in England

The following businesses can reopen and activities can resume provided they follow the Covid-19 Secure guidelines:

  • Casinos
  • Skating rinks
  • Bowling alleys
  • Conference and exhibition centres, for the purpose of government backed pilots, or to host business groups of up to 30 in accessible meeting facilities or to plan future events
  • Indoor play areas, including soft play areas
  • Dance studios – see the updated guidance here.
  • Face coverings are required in casinos, skating rinks, bowling alleys, indoor play areas, exhibition halls and conference centres. Further details are available here.

Find out more here.

Small number of sporting events piloted with the return of spectators

The piloting of a small number of sporting events to test the safe return of spectators will resume from August 15 with a view to reopening competition venues for sports fans, with social distancing measures in place from 1 October. This will commence with the final of the World Snooker Championship at Sheffield’s Crucible Theatre during 15-16 August, as described in the Prime Minister’s announcement on 13 August, with a full pilot programme to follow.

Marriages and civil ceremonies

Venues that host marriages and civil ceremonies in England can now have up to 30 people attend a marriage or civil partnership, where this can be safely accommodated with social distancing in a COVID-19 secure venue. This maximum number includes all those at the ceremony, including the couple, witnesses, officiants and guests. It also includes any third-party suppliers, such as photographers or security, but does not include staff employed by the venue or any third party catering staff. All parties should adhere to social distancing guidelines. 2 metres or 1 metre with risk mitigation (where 2 metres is not viable), are acceptable. Find out more here.

Local Lockdowns

A new email address has been created by the Department of Health and Social Care for any queries that businesses and business representative bodies may have on local lockdown in their area: TTDHSCexternalaffairs@dhsc.gov.uk

Countries removed from travel corridor list

France, the Netherlands, Monaco, Malta, Turks and Caicos Islands and Aruba to be removed from the exempt list for arrivals from 4am Saturday 15 August 2020. If you arrive in England from the above countries or territories before 4am 15 August you may not need to self-isolate. Read the rules about when you need to self-isolate and for how long.

Calling all tradespeople

The £2 billion Green Homes Grant will part fund improvements of over 600,000 homes, supporting over 100,000 jobs in green construction. The scheme will cover green home improvements that could help families save up to £600 a year on their energy bills.

To take part and offer their services through the scheme, all tradespeople must register with TrustMark.  Find out more and sign up here.