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MHCLG updates COVID-19 guidance following national lockdown 07/01/2021 Labelled as Development, Legislation

Following the Prime Minister's address on Monday 4 January announcing the new national lockdown, the Prime Minister gave a statement to Parliament on 6 January on the coronavirus regulations in England and provided an update on the rollout of vaccinations.


An explanatory memorandum on the new regulations and updated guidance is available on the Government website.


Moving home

People can still move home, whether they are renting or buying but people outside their household or support bubble should not help with moving house unless absolutely necessary. Estate and letting agents and removals firms can continue to work. If people are looking to move, they can go to property viewings. Allocations of social homes can continue, as can all lettings in social housing. Guidance for landlords and residents will be further updated shortly and MHCLG will provide more information on the ongoing protections for renters.


Households are encouraged to follow the national guidance on moving home safely, which includes advice on social distancing, letting fresh air in, and wearing a face covering. The full updated Government advice on home moving is available on the Government website.


Business closures and repair services

Certain businesses and venues are permitted to stay open, following COVID-19 secure guidelines, such as businesses providing essential goods and services. Businesses providing repair services may also stay open, where they primarily offer repair services. This means that landlords can continue to provide repair services, and this includes safety inspections.


Canteens in extra-care housing can also remain open for the consumption of food by certain residents where it is reasonably necessary for safeguarding that person's physical or mental health.


Essential services including construction

Where people cannot work from home - including, but not limited to, people who work in critical national infrastructure, including construction and manufacturing - they should continue to travel to their workplace.


Critical workers and vulnerable children who can access schools or educational settings

The Government on 5 January updated the list of critical workers (key workers) and vulnerable children and young people who can access full-time education provision during the coronavirus outbreak. Critical workers include parents whose work is critical to the coronavirus and the EU transition response, those who work in health and social care and in other key sectors outlined in the guidance. Children with at least one parent or carer who is a critical worker can continue to go to school or college if required.


Business support

The Chancellor has also announced further support for businesses. He announced one-off top up grants for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses worth up to £9,000 per property to help businesses through to the spring. A further £594 million is also being made available for councils and the Devolved Administrations to support other businesses not eligible for the grants, that might be affected by the restrictions.



Shielding guidance is being reintroduced for the Clinically Extremely Vulnerable, and guidance will be updated. In the meantime, those affected are asked to refer to the current Tier 4 guidance. Those in Tier 4 will have already received a letter when their area moved into Tier 4, these are still valid up till 18 January and by this time, they should have received a new letter.


Eviction ban

The current ban on evictions over the Christmas period is due to end on 11 January 2021. The Prime Minister in response to questions in the House of Commons stated that the eviction ban is "under review" but no further announcements had been made as at 7 January.


Every Mind Matters campaign and tackling loneliness

The new national lockdown may leave some people feeling lonely or isolated as social activities and contact with family and friends are restricted. The "Every Mind Matters" campaign, developed by the NHS, has a range of support products which councils may find useful to share with their networks.

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