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Businesses that must close at alert level 3.

First published:
10 December 2020
Last updated:

Introduction

This guidance details those businesses and premises which must close from 14 December 2020. These changes are made in response to the serious and imminent threat to public health which is posed by the incidence and spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) in Wales.

The Health Protection (Coronavirus Restrictions and Functions of Local Authorities) (Amendment) (Wales) Regulations 2020 added to the restrictions on individuals, businesses and others to protect public health in the Health Protection (Coronavirus Restrictions) (No. 4) (Wales) Regulations 2020 and came into force at 6pm on 4 December 2020. Further amendments come into force on 14 December 2020.

This guidance relates to business closures and sets out what businesses and premises are required to close and the new requirements for food and drink businesses.

All businesses and premises that are permitted to be open are legally required to take all reasonable measures to mitigate the risk of coronavirus spreading. They should also have regard to Welsh Government guidance on what that means. We recognise the enormous efforts businesses have made to become safe places.

All persons responsible for work carried out in premises must take reasonable measures to minimise the risk of exposure to coronavirus in workplaces and premises open to the public, including taking all reasonable measures to ensure 2 metres distance is kept between persons on premises, other than members of the same household or extended household and any carers of those people.

Wherever businesses or premises are required to be closed, individual premises may be opened at the request of a Welsh Minister or a local authority for any purpose. However, individual businesses cannot apply for an exception to continue trading.

Length of closure

This period of closure begins at 6pm on Friday 4 December and will be reviewed by the Welsh Ministers by Thursday 17 December and at least once in every 3 week period after that date.

Businesses and premises that must remain closed

Business, premises or place Exceptions

Restaurants, bars and public houses, including within members’ clubs, must close at 6pm.  

They are not allowed to sell or supply alcohol for consumption on their premises; or permit the consumption of alcohol on the premises.

Food delivery and takeaway can continue and businesses which only provided food for consumption on their premises can now provide takeaway food after 6pm.

This covers the provision of hot or cold food that has been prepared for consumers for collection or delivery to be consumed, reheated or cooked by consumers off the premises.

Food can also be provided to homeless people, including for consumption on site.

When a celebration of a marriage or formation of a civil partnership is being held on premises which were booked before 6.00 p.m. on 4 December 2020,  the premises may remain open until 10.00 p.m. for the purposes of holding the celebration. Alcohol can still not be sold or consumed on these occasions.

Cafés and canteens must close at 6pm.  These are not allowed to sell or supply alcohol for consumption on their premises; or permit the consumption of alcohol on the premises.

Food delivery and takeaway can continue (and as above) after 6pm.

Cafés and canteens at hospitals, care homes, schools or within accommodation provided for students; prison and military canteens.  

Cafes and canteens at other workplaces, where there is no practical alternative for staff at that workplace to obtain food.

Food and drink can also be provided to homeless people, including for consumption on site.

When a celebration of a marriage or formation of a civil partnership is being held on premises which were booked before 6.00 p.m. on 4 December 2020. The premises may, remain open until 10.00 p.m. for the purposes of holding the celebration. Alcohol can still not be sold or consumed on these occasions.

Restaurants, cafes and bars in hotels must close at 6:00pm to non-residents.

They are not allowed to sell or supply alcohol for consumption on its premises; or permit the consumption of alcohol on the premises.

Food delivery and takeaway can continue (and as above) after 6pm. This includes room service and this may include alcohol.

When a celebration of a marriage or formation of a civil partnership is being held on premises which were booked before 6.00 p.m. on 4 December 2020,  the premises may remain open until 10.00 p.m. for the purposes of holding the celebration. Alcohol can still not be sold or consumed on these occasions.

Amusement arcades

 

Amusement parks  

Bingo halls

 

Bowling alleys

 
Casinos  
Cinemas

Drive-in cinemas are permitted.

Performances/sessions may be broadcast without an audience, whether over the internet or as part of a radio or television broadcast. It is recommended that Public Health Wales guidelines are followed to ensure the safety of staff taking part.
Concert halls and other live music venues Performances/sessions may be broadcast without an audience, whether over the Internet or as part of a radio or television broadcast. It is recommended that Public Health Wales guidelines are followed to ensure the safety of staff taking part.

Funfairs

 
Indoor play areas including trampoline parks and centres, and soft play  

Visitor attractions such as stately homes and gardens, houses of historical interest

 

Museums, galleries and archive services

Any business displaying artworks primarily for the purpose of sale is considered to be a retail business rather than a gallery, and so is permitted to remain open.

Nightclubs and other dance venues Nightclubs are considered to be “venues where live or recorded music is provided for members of the public or members of the venue to dance”. Any nightclub that did not meet this definition would be allowed to open.

Skating rinks and indoor skate parks and centres

 
Strip clubs, lap dancing or other sexual entertainment venues  
Theme Parks  
Theatres Drive-in theatres may open.

Work carried out in people’s homes

Work carried out in people’s homes, for example by tradespeople carrying out repairs and maintenance, can continue, provided that the person carrying out the work is well and has no symptoms.

The person responsible for work which is being carried out in another person’s home must take reasonable measures to minimise the risk of exposure to coronavirus.

Please see the reasonable measures guidance for more information.

Read guidance for working in other people’s homes can be seen here.

No work should be carried out by a tradesperson who has coronavirus symptoms, however mild.

Compliance

Everyone must comply with the restrictions and requirements set out in the Regulations. There is separate guidance on reasonable measures to be taken to prevent the spread of coronavirus which persons responsible for work must have regard to.

The requirements to close relevant businesses are set out in Regulation 19 of and Schedule 1 to the Health Protection (Coronavirus Restrictions) (No. 4) (Wales) Regulations 2020, as amended by the Health Protection (Coronavirus Restrictions and Functions of Local Authorities) (Amendment) (Wales) Regulations 2020. A business operating in contravention of these Regulations will be committing an offence, which may attract a Fixed Penalty Notice of £1,000, increasing with subsequent offences up to a maximum of £10,000 – or it may attract a fine, which is not limited on the statutory scales.

The restrictions are being enforced primarily by local authority enforcement officers and the police.

Local authority enforcement officers are able to issue a “premises improvement notice”. This requires the person responsible for the premises to take specified measures, and if those measures are not taken an officer may issue a “premises closure notice” requiring the premises to close. Where necessary, an officer may also issue a premises closure notice without having previously issued a premises improvement notice. They will also now be able to issue fixed penalty notices, starting from £1,000 for a first offence and rising with any further offences.

Where necessary, an officer may also issue a premises closure notice without having previously issued a premises improvement notice.

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