The 'rule of six': What is it and what does it mean for you?

Reporter: Grace Marner
Date published: 14 September 2020

Gatherings of more than six people in England is now illegal.

The new legislation came into force today (September 14), but what does this mean for boroughs in Greater Manchester?

Well, the local restrictions in all GM boroughs apart from Stockport and Wigan mean that if someone isn't part of your household or support bubble, then you cannot meet in your home, garden or venue whether you have less than six people or not. 

You can meet people outside your household at a distance in a public space like a park, but you cannot do this is Oldham or Bolton.

This is limited to a maximum of six people as per the restrictions across England. 

These are the rules in Rochdale, Tameside, Salford, Bury, Trafford, and Manchester city:

You mustn't host or visit people in homes or private gardens if they are not part of your household or support bubble (household with one adult joins with another household)

You mustn't socialise with anyone outside your household or bubble in a public venue including, but not limited to, pubs, restaurants and cafes.

You must wear a face covering on public transport and in supermarkets unless exempt

Casinos, skating rinks, bowling alleys, indoor play areas and soft play, exhibition centres and conference halls are all allowed to reopen

Socially distanced indoor performances will also be able to resume

Close contact beauty services - such as eyebrow threading and make up application - can also start again

If you travel outside your area, you must not meet anyone outside of your household or bubble

You should not visit anyone in care home other than in exceptional circumstances

You can play team sports if they are organised formally by a sports club or similar organisation

Up to 30 people are allowed to attend weddings, funerals, civil partnerships and other religious life-cycle ceremonies but gatherings afterwards should not have any more than a group of 6

You may go to places of worship and adhere to social distancing while there

You can travel to and from work in and out of the area

You can continue to use childcare settings but friends and family who don't live with you or are not part of your bubble cannot help with childcare

Children of parents that are separated can move between the main caregiver households

Additional rules for Oldham include:

Pubs and restaurants should only seat people who have pre-booked with them and only have groups of no more than six people from the same household

Unlike other boroughs, you cannot meet people you do not live with or aren't part of a bubble with outdoors in public spaces like parks.

Weddings, civil partnership ceremonies and funerals can still go ahead, but they should have no more than 20 people attending.

This should be limited to close family of the people getting married or the person who has died, or people who live(d) or formed a support bubble with them

If anyone is caught flouting the rules, they could face a fine of £100 since the restrictions are enforceable by law, which doubles each time up to £3,200.

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