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How do I stay safe under new lockdown rules and when will they next be reviewed?

PUBLISHED: 13:15 04 June 2020 | UPDATED: 13:16 04 June 2020

Social distancing rules are still in place in public and now in private gardens. You can have up to six people at private gatherings in gardens Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Social distancing rules are still in place in public and now in private gardens. You can have up to six people at private gatherings in gardens Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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You can attend a barbecue in a friend’s garden and meet with more than one household outside, but how do you do all that safely?

Face masks can be worn at individual discretion, but the government has asked people to wear them in enclosed public spaces such as shops Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNFace masks can be worn at individual discretion, but the government has asked people to wear them in enclosed public spaces such as shops Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

As of June 1, there have been changes to the places you can go and the things you can do in lockdown in England.

You can spend time with other people in their private gardens or in public, as long as the group does not total more than six people and you adhere to social distancing rules, as well as visit outdoor markets which began to reopen this month. You can also visit car showrooms.

Nursery, Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 children have been able to return to school, but parents who do not choose to send them will not be fined for keeping them at home.

If you were shielding you are now able to see one other person outdoors, as long as you remain at least two metres apart.

You can now visit another household for a barbecue - but do you need your own plates, a face mask, or even gloves? Picture: GETTYYou can now visit another household for a barbecue - but do you need your own plates, a face mask, or even gloves? Picture: GETTY

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Besides following the social distancing rules set out at the start of lockdown, what else can you do to keep yourself safe?

Do I need to wear a face mask?

As of June 1, the UK government only recommends members of the public wear face masks if you are in an enclosed space for an extended period of time, for example if you are food shopping, or on public transport.

Do I need to wear any other form of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)?

As of June 1, the UK government does not recommend members of the public wear other forms of PPE, in part to ensure that PPE supplies can be used by NHS staff and carers coming into regular contact with older and vulnerable people.

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Who do I have to remain distant from?

If you are meeting people from outside your household, you should keep two metres away.

In the new advice from the government, it recommends trying to “limit the number of people you see, especially over short periods of time” - which echoes the ‘bubble’ model being used in schools whereby you mix with the same people rather than lots of different people.

What do I do if a garden is too small to socially distance in?

Private gardens should only be used for meetings if you are able to remain socially distant from people from other households.

Can I go into other people’s houses?

You should not enter anyone else’s household except to access the garden or the toilet.

You should not use spaces such as sheds, cabins or garages as these are enclosed spaces with a higher chance of transmission.

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How can I use the bathroom and stay safe?

You should minimise contact with household surfaces and wash your hands thoroughly when using the bathroom in another person’s household.

A study published in the journal Nature, conducted at the University of Wuhan, also suggests flushing the toilet with the lid closed could reduce the potential spread of coronavirus.

Government advice includes:

• Wipe down surfaces you come into contact with

• Use a separate towel or paper towels to dry your hands

• Wash or dispose of paper towels/hand towels after use

Can I share food and drink with someone outside of my household?

Although government advice does not specifically say you should avoid sharing food and drink, it says: “You should not pass each other food or drink unless you live together.”

Hands should also be washed regularly if you are sharing food and drink.

Can I share plates and glasses with someone outside of my household?

Government advice says those from different households should use their own plates and utensils when sharing food and drink.

Those from different households in someone else’s gardens should not help hosts carry items in and out of the house or go inside to assist with washing up.

Can I play sport with people from other households now?

As of June 1, you can participate in sports with people from other household which allow you to remain socially distant – tennis, cricket and Frisbee, for example.

The government advice says: “People who play team sports can meet to train together and do things like conditioning or fitness sessions but they must be in separate groups of no more than six and must be two metres apart at all times.

“While groups could practice ball skills like passing and kicking, equipment sharing should be kept to a minimum and strong hand hygiene practices should be in place before and after.”

How long are these rules in place for?

These rules remain under “constant review” from the government. The next official reassessment of the lockdown rules will be on June 25 after the Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced the lockdown review period had been extended from 21 days to 28 days. The last review took place on May 28.

Are there still fines for those who don’t follow the rules?

Penalties for a first offence are now set at £100 (reduced to £50 if paid within two weeks) and double for every subsequent rule breach, up to £3,200.


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A Suffolk safari organiser is back on the trail after lockdown. Philip Charles returned from six years working as a bear guide and researcher in British Columbia in Canada to set up Spirit of Suffolk in his home county. But the newly-formed business took a temporary hit when the coronavirus crisis struck. As well as safaris, Phil also runs photography workshops, and produces prints and home-made short books. He is a lecturer at Suffolk New College, teaching wildlife and conservation-based modules on the Suffolk Rural campus in Otley. Through his business, he aims to build a conservation-based economy connecting visitors with Suffolk’s stunning countryside both digitally and physically through safaris and lectures. “I spend most of my time on safari in farmland habitat on the Shotley and Deben peninsulas,” he says. “This guiding season for Spirit of Suffolk started early March and I had several safari bookings as well as two photography workshops planned throughout March and April.” Philip was just one safari into the season – with one urban fox tour under his belt – with the business really taking off when lockdown measures were introduced on March 23, which meant he had to ditch his planned events. Lockdown hit him hard on a personal level too, he admits. “I always thought I would be able to head out to the countryside still, alone, and with caution. But as lockdown measures were introduced I realised this was not to be the case. “On a personal level this was deeply troubling as time spent in nature forms who I am as a person in both actions and spirit. “From a business perspective initially it felt shattering as I could not operate any of the core elements of the business, and to have started the season so spectacularly well with an amazing first safari and superb urban fox tour I really felt bad for the guests that had trips booked and were now not able to take them. “As a wildlife photographer but living in central Ipswich I also felt limited in what I could do photography-wise.” But he picked himself up and started working on his website and social media strategies. It was a “joy” to provide a vital connection with nature to people stuck at home, he said. “Early on in the lockdown I started a project called ‘On the Doorstep’ in which I would spend a little time each day stood on my doorstep and photograph the comings and goings of people.” The project now forms part of a cultural snapshot of Ipswich in 2020 collated by Suffolk Archives. He also used the downtime to create short books. The two titles – Suffolk Wildlife - A Photo Journey, and Spirit Bear - A True Story of Isolation and Survival – have been “very popular”, selling both in the UK and abroad. They even received an accolade from veteran environmentalist and wildlife broadcaster Sir David Attenborough who described them as “delightful”. He has two more planned – the first of which is Bears and Hares, which is set to be followed by a collection of photo stories from the doorstep project. As lockdown eased in early August he was able to resume his safaris, initially on a two-week trial basis. The pilot proved very successful and as a result he was able to begin booking events again. “Although we are nearing the quieter season I continue to take people out who are keen on enjoying the beauty of Suffolk and its wonderful wildlife and I am personally excited for the beauty and joys of autumn,” he says. “People often purchase the safaris as a gift for someone else and this continues to be popular, as a birthday present or Christmas present that can be redeemed at any point in the future.” From October, he is also planning to resume his one-day photography workshops. “I have always loved showing people the wonders of nature, whether that be a grizzly, a barn owl, killer whales or an urban fox. I think the lockdown period offered a different appreciation for the things around us and I am ever so excited to be with people again and to be showing them all the wonderful wildlife of my favourite spots in Suffolk.” He has had to adapt the tours to ensure safety, but the changes are subtle and don’t detract from the main goal - which is seeing nature, he says. “I now encourage the guest to bring along their own drink and snacks and to also bring their own pair of binoculars. We do wear face coverings while in the vehicle and with the windows open to ensure ventilation. Such changes have been well received by the safari guests and we continue to have some great wildlife viewing.” He’ll be “forever grateful” to his customers and guests for their support and understanding during the pandemic. “Recovery all depends on the current status of local restrictions and the virus itself. I am hoping that a vaccine can be in place as soon as possible. As a fledgling business I have felt a hit, although the sales of short books has helped.” But he remains “positive and optimistic”, he says. “The only way is up,” he says. His hope is that Spirit of Suffolk will become a well-known brand. “I have long term goals of buying woodland for conservation and wildlife viewing and also establishing a small lodge where I can accommodate guests for taking multi-day safaris and tours. “For now I am happy to take things slowly and cautiously, testing the waters in certain areas as I continue to grow the brand and products that I provide. “It is exciting. I am so deeply passionate about what I do that I know it will continue to be a success.” Suffolk’s wildlife in spotlight as safaris get back on track