Are shops, takeaways and banks open? These are the essential businesses that won’t close during new England lockdown

All non-essential shops, hairdressers and gyms must close – but which businesses can stay open during the latest lockdown?

Tuesday, 5th January 2021, 1:02 pm

In a televised address to the nation on 5 January, the Prime Minister ordered the country to stay indoors other than for limited exceptions, in an attempt to prevent the NHS being overwhelmed by surging infections.

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A man walks past St Martins Church in Birmingham as England enters its third coronavirus lockdown of the year (Photo: Nathan Stirk/Getty Images)

The Prime Minister pinned hopes on the rollout of vaccines to ease the restrictions in mid-February, but said the new variant of coronavirus, which is up to 70% more transmissible, was spreading in a “frustrating and alarming” manner.

So how does that affect businesses? Which will have to close again, and which can remain open?

Here is everything you need to know.

Which businesses have to close?

A family gather around the television to watch Boris Johnson give a televised message to the nation from 10 Downing Street in London, on January 4 2021 (Photo: PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)

All non-essential shops, hairdressers and personal care salons must close.

Entertainment venues such as cinemas, skating rinks and bowling alleys must remain closed.

Exercise is allowed with members of your household or support bubble or one other person from another household, such as if going for a walk or run, but should be taken locally.

As such, gyms (indoor and outdoor) will have to close, and tennis courts, swimming pools, and golf courses will not be permitted to open.

Guest accommodation providers such as hotels, B&Bs and caravan parks must close, but may remain open for specific reasons, including where guests need accommodation while moving house.

Which businesses can stay open?

Under the new restrictions, residents can leave their homes for shopping for necessities such as food and medicine, but only as infrequently as possible.

People will be able to go to work if it is impossible to work from home, such as those in the construction sector or who are critical workers. All others must work from home.

Supermarkets, pharmacies, off-licences, builders’ merchants, and garden centres can stay open, as can launderettes, car repair shops, car washes, banks, market stalls selling essentials, and bike shops.

Restaurants and other hospitality venues can continue with delivery or takeaway only, but people will not be able to add alcohol to any orders they collect; people will not be able to add alcohol to any orders they collect.

When will the lockdown end?

In his address, the Prime Minister warned that the measures being introduced immediately are expected to last until mid-February.

“The weeks ahead will be the hardest yet but I really do believe that we’re entering the last phase of the struggle,” the Prime Minister said.

It is thought that measures are unlikely to be relaxed until around 13 million people aged over 70 or classed as extremely clinically vulnerable have received the vaccine and been given enough time to be protected – about two to three weeks after getting the jab.

But Mr Johnson issued a series of ifs – on the public following the rules and understanding of the virus not dramatically shifting – before the nation can start “cautiously” moving down through tiered restrictions with schools hoping to reopen after the February half-term.

For more information on England’s national lockdown, head to the Government’s website