Northern Ireland coronavirus restrictions eased for Christmas

Deividas Januska

December 14 2020

Northern Ireland’s coronavirus restrictions have been relaxed, tightened, and now relaxed again in recent weeks.

Below, we look at how the latest easing of restrictions impact businesses in Northern Ireland.

Pubs, cafes, and restaurants

From December 11th, pubs, cafes, and restaurants that serve food can open but must close by 11:00 p.m. However, pubs that don’t serve food must remain closed.

Retail and cultural attractions

The following changes come into effect from December 11th:

  • Non-essential retail can reopen.
  • Close-contact services such as hairdressers, beauty salons, and barbers can reopen but only by appointment and with social distancing measures in place.
  • Off licence closing time and the sale of alcohol in supermarkets will be 10:30 p.m. (currently 08:00 p.m.).
  • Cinemas, museums, libraries, galleries, and indoor and outdoor attractions can reopen.

Gyms and sports facilities

The following changes apply for gyms and sports facilities from December 11th:

  • Gyms can reopen for individual training and personal trainers. Non-aerobic classes such as weightlifting can take place, but other classes cannot.
  • Outdoor organised contact sport can resume. All indoor sport is still banned except for elite athletes.
  • A maximum of 500 spectators at an outdoor sporting event will be permitted. This will be subject to a risk assessment being carried out by the venue.

Education, weddings, and funerals

For schools, higher education institutes, weddings, and funerals, the following apply:

  • All schools will remain open.
  • Further and higher education institutions should only delivery essential face-to-face learning.
  • From December 11th, the 25-person limit on weddings and funerals will be lifted. A risk assessment will instead be carried out to determine how many people a venue can safely accommodate.

Need our help?

If you’re a Peninsula client, you can call our 24/7 helpline for instant, unlimited advice on how the latest lockdown changes affect your business.

But if you’re not a client? No problem.

You can still claim a free advice call with one of our HR and health & safety experts today. They’ll help ensure you’re COVID-19 covered in everything from your employment contracts to your workplace risk assessments.

To speak to an expert now, call 0800 917 0771.

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