It’s been announced that Ruddington will now enter the highest category of COVID-19 restrictions a day later than originally planned.
The short delay to towns and villages in the Rushcliffe Borough Council (RBC) area moving from Tier 2 into Tier 3 is due to Nottinghamshire County Council and our eight other local authorities deciding that the alarming recent rise in Coronavirus cases means that all areas should now face the toughest measures. Following further discussions between the Government and Council Leaders, all have agreed the City of Nottingham and the entire County of Nottinghamshire will now be ‘locked down’ at the same time – from 12.01am this Friday (30th October) for a period of 28 days.
The ‘Very High Alert’ Tier 3 restrictions mean:
- People must not meet socially with friends and family indoors in any setting unless they are part of their household or support bubble. This includes private homes and indoors in hospitality venues, such as pubs.
- People must not meet with people outside of their household or support bubble in a private garden or in most outdoor public venues.
- People can continue to see friends and family in groups of six or less that they don’t live with (or have formed a support bubble with) in certain outdoor public spaces, such as a park or public garden.
- All pubs and bars must close unless they are serving substantial meals, such as a main lunchtime or evening meal. They can only serve alcohol as part of a meal. Pubs, bars and restaurants must still close between 10pm and 5am.
- Wedding receptions will not be permitted, but people can get married with a maximum of 15 people at the ceremony (check with the venue for additional restrictions).
- Avoid travelling outside the Very High alert area or entering a Very High alert level area, other than for work, education or for caring responsibilities, or to travel through as part of a longer journey.
- Avoid staying overnight in another part of the UK.
As well as the main Tier 3 restrictions, Council Leaders have agreed the following additional local restrictions in Nottinghamshire – some of which are more stringent than those originally planned for Rushcliffe:
- All hospitality venues (cafes, restaurants, pubs, bars and social clubs) can only remain open to offer substantial meals, or must move to operate a delivery and takeaway service only. Alcohol can only be served with a substantial meal.
- The use of shared smoking equipment (such as but not limited to shisha) in hospitality venues will be prohibited.
- Betting shops, car boot sales and auction houses (with the exception of Livestock and agricultural equipment sales) must close.
- Alcohol sales must be prohibited after 9pm where alcohol is purchased to consume off premises, for example shops. Alcohol can continue to be purchased in hospitality venues where accompanying a substantial meal, up until 10pm.
- Indoor entertainment and tourism venues must close, except for ice-skating rinks, cinemas, concert halls, and theatres. Hotels and other accommodation can stay open.
- Outdoor entertainment and tourism venues can remain open, with the exception of their indoor attractions (such as animal attractions or landmarks).
- Saunas and steam rooms must close.
- Leisure and sporting facilities (such as leisure centres, gyms, fitness and dance studios, swimming pools and sports courts) can remain open. It is strongly advised that indoor group exercise classes (including dance and fitness classes) should not take place.
- Personal care settings such as tattoo parlours, tanning and nail salons, and piercing services must close. Hairdressers and barber salons can remain open but cannot perform services that are otherwise closed. It is advised that personal care services do not take place in private homes.
- Public buildings such as town and parish halls, community centres and libraries can remain open to run activities such as childcare and support groups. Public buildings should not host events for private hire, such as birthday parties or other social activities.
The joint statement says that Government and local partners will closely monitor the impact of these new restrictions, which will be in place for 28 days from Friday 30th October and will be kept under review.
Whilst the impact here in Ruddington will not be as severe as with the national ‘lockdown’ in March, there are several businesses which have announced they will need either to close or reduce their hours.
Lindsey Flint of the Victoria Tavern says: “Sadly our delicious cobs do not count as a substantial meal, which unfortunately means we have no alternative but to close our doors at 10.00pm on Thursday 29th October. There is so much more I could say but the main thing is we need you all to stay safe and healthy. Look after yourselves and fingers crossed we will see you before Christmas!?”
Residents will also be unable to purchase alcohol for consumption off the premises at Ruddington’s supermarkets or any other licensed premises here any day after 9pm.
Additionally, our bookmakers and nail bars must close – whilst there can be no wedding receptions during these restrictions. At our hospitality venues offering outside seating, such as Philo’s and The Frame Breakers (which will remain open with reduced opening times), customers can no longer sit outside with other households but are still permitted to do so if with those in their support bubble.
Philo’s owner Lucy Towne says: “Now that the outside area is open we have a different exit point – making the flow of the shop feel much better during these strange times. We are lucky to also have a large seating area upstairs where we ensure that all tables are 2m apart. We have full screens at the counter and ask that all customers wear masks when moving around Philo’s.”
However, there was initial confusion as to whether customers can just pop into a village cafe for only a soft drink, tea or coffee and cake. After RBC indicated originally that this would still be allowed under Tier 3, it’s now confirmed just serving a drink on its own will not be permitted. Any drink must be accompanied by “a main table served meal such as breakfast, a sandwich or salad or main evening meal” – as will be the case with all licensed premises from Friday. It means after-dinner drinks won’t be allowed either, with RBC adding: “All drinks must be ordered with a substantial meal under the new measures. So customers should not order an additional drink once finishing their meal.”
Having to rely much more on takeaway trade, it is likely some Ruddington hospitality venues which though they could afford to stay open under Tier 3 might opt to shut after all. So far this includes The Old Bakehouse Tearoom and Jasper’s Cafe which have both announced they will close temporarily from this Friday.
Ruddington Borough Councillor Mike Gaunt comments: “Businesses now have only a few hours to rethink everything that they do… nice one!”
RBC says: “Details on the package for businesses affected by the new changes will be available and communicated as soon as possible.” Nevertheless, this is becoming increasingly frustrating for our hard pressed village retailers who’ve already implemented strict and extensive COVID-secure measures in order to continue trading, including ‘Test & Trace’ QR boxes to use with the NHS COVID-19 app last month in line with the ever changing Government Coronavirus regulations.
Meantime, away from hospitality venues, it’s confirmed we can continue to see friends and family in groups of six or less that we don’t live with (or have formed a support bubble with) in large, outdoor, public spaces such as Rushcliffe Country Park. It’s also been confirmed that Ruddington Library will remain open at its currently reduced operating hours. However Ruddington’s Framework Knitters’ Museum will close for the next 28 days.
As well as observing the new restrictions, we’re asked to continue to:
- wash our hands regularly and for 20 seconds
- wear a face covering in indoor settings where social distancing may be difficult, and where we will coming into contact with people we do not normally meet
- stay 2 metres apart from people we do not live with where possible, or 1 metre with extra precautions in place (such as wearing a face covering, or increasing ventilation indoors).
People who have symptoms of COVID-19 – high temperature, continuous cough or loss of taste or smell – are reminded they must self-isolate immediately and book a test online or by calling 119.
Ruddington’s Navy 3 and Green 10 buses will continue to operate as before, subject to COVID-safe restrictions which can be found >>HERE<<.