England limits gatherings to six people in order to curb spread of COVID-19

England will limit social gatherings to six people, a “simple” guideline that will be easy for police to enforce, UK health secretary Matt Hancock announced.

He said there would be exceptions made for school, work, weddings, funerals and christenings but that they wanted a guideline that would be clear for people.

Hancock said that gatherings should be socially distanced and the limit will be enforced from Monday.

“We’ve seen in other countries around the world where they don’t take action then you end up with this second peak leading to more hospitalisations and more deaths, and we don’t want to see that here,” said Hancock.

He said in the House of Commons yesterday that he did not want the UK to follow Spain, France and the United States.

Speaking to the BBC, Hancock said he hoped the rules would not need to be in place for Christmas, stating that it was still a long way off.

Boris Johnson is set to brief the public on the changes later this afternoon which the government hopes will help to prevent a second lockdown.

It comes a day after Hancock announced that the UK government would impose local restrictions in Bolton, Greater Manchester due to the acceleration of COVID-19 cases.

Pubs and restaurants there will only be open for takeaway and will be closed between 10:00 pm and 5:00 am.

There will also be a ban on social gatherings between different households in Bolton, which police can enforce.

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