What are the new lockdown rules in England? Everything you can do from today

29 March 2021, 10:04 | Updated: 29 March 2021, 10:23

What are the new lockdown rules for England? (stock images)
What are the new lockdown rules for England? (stock images). Picture: Getty
Polly Foreman

By Polly Foreman

March 29 new lockdown rules: everything you can do today as measures are relaxed.

Today (March 29), the lockdown rules have been eased in England to allow things like outdoor sport and the return of the 'rule of six'.

Read more: Temperatures across Britain to reach up to 24 degrees today as lockdown restrictions lift

The 'Stay at Home' message has been abandoned, meaning people are free to leave their homes for non-essential reasons.

The new guidance comes as part of the first stage of lockdown-easing in England, which began on March 8 with the reopening of schools.

Since March 8, the public has been allowed to meet up with one friend for a picnic or coffee in a public outdoor space.

Here are all the new rules coming in from today (March 29).

The 'rule of six' has returned

The 'rule of six' has returned for people meeting up outside.

From today, the public will be free to meet up in outdoor public spaces or private gardens in groups of up to six people from multiple households.

If only two households are in attendance, an unlimited number of people are able to meet up outside.

People in support bubbles will count as the same household.

The 'rule of six' will apply to those meeting up in private gardens (stock image)
The 'rule of six' will apply to those meeting up in private gardens (stock image). Picture: Getty

There is no age limit on the people included in the 'rule of six', meaning babies and children will be included in the count.

People meeting up outside will still be required to ensure they are socially distancing.

You will not be able to go inside a friend's house for any other reason other than to use the toilet or access the garden.

A spokesperson for Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed the rules in February, stating: "Yes, people can move through a private household to get to a garden if they need to."

When questioned about using the bathroom while socialising in someone's private garden, the spokesperson added: "Yes, as I say, the same as the situation last year."

Outdoor sport has resumed

Formally organised outdoor sports (such as outdoor swimming and golf) are able to resume.

Speaking about the return of sport, Boris Johnson said: "I hope today will kick-start a Great British summer of sport – with people of all ages reunited with teammates, and able to resume the activities they love."

Indoor sports facilities such as gyms must remain closed until April 12.

Read more: When do non-essential shops open in England?

Outdoor swimming has resumed today
Outdoor swimming has resumed today. Picture: PA

You can leave home for non-essential reasons

The 'Stay at Home' message has been lifted - meaning you no longer need justification for going out.

You are able to travel to visit friends and family, but you cannot go indoors or stay overnight.

The government is recommending that people stay local, with the guidance stating that you "should continue to minimise travel wherever possible".

Boris Johnson says foreign travel options in summer 'look difficult'

Outdoor childcare

The gov.uk website also states:

  • childcare and supervised activities are allowed outdoors for all children
  • formally organised parent and child groups can take place outdoors for up to 15 attendees. Children under 5 will not be counted in this number

For more details about the new rules, visit the gov.uk website


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