Tier 2 restrictions come into place today


The national lockdown comes to an end today (2 December) and Hackney is going back to Tier-2 with the rest of London. 

Cases of coronavirus are still high in Hackney, residents are urged to remain cautious and keep following HANDS, FACE, SPACE. 






Mayor of Hackney, Philip Glanville
While the national lockdown comes to an end today and Hackney is going back to Tier-2 with the rest of London, it is not a return to normal. Coronavirus has hit Hackney hard over the past year, with many tragic deaths, and we are sadly still seeing high levels of infection in the borough. So we must all continue to use that renowned Hackney Spirit to keep each other safe.
Mayor of Hackney, Philip Glanville

New guidelines that have come into effect today mean some businesses can now reopen, but there are still some restrictions in place. London risks going into stricter Tier-3 restrictions if people do not follow the rules. We also risk continuing to spread the infection and possibly harming others, if we don’t stick to the guidelines. 

As the economy can now reopen, residents are being encouraged to shop local and support Hackney businesses in the run up to Christmas. Businesses have been working hard to make sure their premises are covid safe. People can support this effort by making sure to wear a face covering when indoors, keeping 2m away from other people and planning ahead to avoid busier times at shops. 

There is information on our business support pages on what the new Tier-2 restrictions mean for businesses. The Council are also hosting a virtual business forum on 10 December at 6pm. If businesses want to register for this, they can email businesses@hackney.gov.uk. 

While the Council has no powers to enforce social distancing restrictions, it has been working closely with businesses to advise on social distancing guidance and trading safely and legally, to support them to reopen. 

As a result of the Government’s new tier system, the Council can now issue improvement notices to businesses that do not comply with Covid-secure regulations. 

Dr Sandra Husbands, Director of Public Health
There is light at the end of the tunnel with the breakthroughs on vaccines, however it will be some months until these are rolled out widely. There is a long winter ahead and the sad fact is that people are getting ill and dying again from coronavirus. So, it is still really important for us to follow the guidelines and make sure we are practising hands, face, space. If we do this we can keep each other safe, and help prevent London going into a higher tier with more restrictions.
Dr Sandra Husbands, Director of Public Health

What the new rules mean

Meeting others remains restricted

  • You must not meet or mix with anyone you do not live with in any indoor setting unless they are in your support bubble. This applies both at a home and in any indoor public place, such as places of worship, pubs and restaurants. 
  • Children cannot meet people from their school bubble outside of school.
  • You must not meet in a group of more than six people outside (the rule of six) and if you do meet, you must remain 2m away from those not in your household.
  • There are some exemptions on the Tier 2 rules for meeting others, for example, to provide care for someone vulnerable. Remember these Tier 2 rules don’t apply if you need to escape from injury or harm. Full list of exemptions.

Many businesses and venues can reopen

  • All non-essential retail can open. Remember you must wear a face covering in shops unless you have an exemption.
  • Gyms, leisure centres, sports facilities can open. Organised indoor sport and exercise classes can resume.
  • Hairdressers, barbers, and beauty services can open. 
  • Restaurants and cafes can open. Pubs and bars can also open, but only if they are operating as restaurants with table service. All hospitality venues can only serve alcohol with substantial meals. 
  • All hospitality venues must stop taking orders by 10pm and close by 11pm. Deliveries and takeaways can continue until later. 
  • Cinemas, museums, theatres and other entertainment venues can open, but they must close at 11pm. 
  • You can attend both indoor and outdoor events, like performances and shows, and watch spectator sport. Capacity will continue to be limited. 
  • If you have concerns that a business or venue is not complying with social distancing guidance, you can email covidresponseteam@hackney.gov.uk and the Council’s enforcement and licensing team will investigate.

Work and travel

  • You should continue working from home if you can. 
  • You can travel to venues or amenities which are open, but you should aim to reduce the number of journeys you make where possible. 
  • You should continue to walk or cycle where possible, and plan ahead to avoid busy times and routes. 
  • If you travel from a Tier 2 area to a Tier 1 area you must continue to follow the London Tier 2 rules. You should avoid travel to or overnight stays in Tier 3 areas.

Places of worship and community settings

  • Communal worship can now begin again, but you still cannot mix with anyone outside your own household (or support bubble) in a place of worship. 
  • You should wear a face covering when indoors, unless you are exempt. 
  • Public buildings like libraries and community centres can be fully open, but you still cannot meet socially with other households in these venues. 
  • Weddings and funerals can take place. 15 people can attend a wedding ceremony and 30 people can attend a funeral service. 

NHS services, including GP services and dentists remain open

  • If you are unwell or need medical help, use the NHS 111 online service - 111.nhs.uk, or call 111 if you can’t get help online. 
  • If you’re advised to go to hospital, you should go.
  • You are required to wear a face mask/covering when attending NHS services, such as your GP practice or hospital appointment

Ways to keep safe

  1. Keep a safe distance from others. Stay two metres apart from people you do not live with as much as possible.
  2. Wherever you cannot keep a safe distance from others wear a face covering. It is mandatory to wear a face covering on public transport and in shops. 
  3. Wash your hands frequently and carry hand sanitiser when you are out. 
  4. When meeting people you don’t live with, you must do so outdoors . 
  5. Make sure indoor venues have good ventilation; open windows and doors when you can to allow fresh air to circulate. 
  6. If you develop COVID-19 symptoms (high fever, continuous cough, loss of taste or smell) then self-isolate immediately and request a test as soon as you can using the details below. 
  7. If you are over 60 or clinically vulnerable you could be at higher risk of severe illness from coronavirus. You should therefore be especially careful to follow the London Tier 2 rules and to minimise your contact with others. 
  8. If you are clinically extremely vulnerable, then the Government is no longer advising you to work from home and to stay at home as much as possible. However, their advice is still that you should limit the amount of contact you have with other people as much as possible and try to reduce the amount of time you spend in places where it’s difficult to maintain a good 2m distance from others. The Government is in the process of writing to everyone who is clinically extremely vulnerable with more detailed advice.

Read the full government guidance pages.

Coronavirus testing sites in Hackney

  • Dalston, Bentley Road Car Park, N1 4BZ (open 7 days a week 8am-8pm)
  • Hackney Central, Mare Street, E9 6ND (open 7 days a week 8am-8pm)
  • Stamford Hill, Sandford Court, Bethune Road, N16 5BB (open 7 days a week 8am-8pm)
  • Stamford Hill, Yesodey Hatorah School, Egerton Rd, N16 6UB
  • Homerton, Hackney Marshes Centre, E9 5PF

There are also 2 testing centres nearby that residents can also use:

  • Stamford Hill Primary Nursery Berkeley Rd, Haringey N15 6HD (7 days 8am-8pm)
  • Guildhall Yard, City of London, EC2V 5AA (7 days 8am-8pm)

To book an appointment at these sites call 119, book via the COVID-19 app or go to nhs.uk/coronavirus. 

Support for businesses

The Council is working closely with local businesses to support them to reopen, and has been visiting them at each stage of this crisis to advise on social distancing guidance.

It is supporting businesses by relaying regular updates on Government guidance through the Hackney Business Network and supporting pubs and bars to register as food businesses. The Council is rolling out £12 million of further coronavirus business grants to help businesses affected by local and national restrictions. 

While the Council has no powers to enforce social distancing restrictions, it has been working closely with businesses to advise them on trading safely and legally during the pandemic. 

As a result of the Government’s new tier system, the Council can now issue improvement notices to businesses that do not comply with Covid-secure regulations. 

The Council will be running a virtual forum for businesses on the new restrictions on 10 December 6pm, including a presentation from Public Health, Environmental Health and the Police. There will also be a Q&A. Sign up by emailing business@hackney.gov.uk. 

Businesses can access guidance at: hackney.gov.uk/support-for-business