On Thursday, the government announced that more industries are able to open up.
I have been sifting through all of the e-mails that have been coming through so I could pass the information onto all of you – there have been a lot of updates from the government.
1) From this weekend – July 11th – artists, musicians and performing artists can return to outdoor performances to socially distanced audiences. The government is going to be trialling indoor performances with some venues to see when indoor socially distanced performances can happen.
The guidelines that the government has published can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/performing-arts
The press release announcing the opening of outdoor performances can be read here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/performing-arts-given-green-light-to-resume-outdoors-on-july-11. It talks a little bit about the investigations they will be doing to see when indoor performances can begin again.
2) Recreational sports can begin as well. People can rejoin their local sports teams once they have had their plans approved to ensure everyone’s safety.
The government has created guidelines for different aspects of outdoor sport and recreation and you can access all of the different articles here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-phased-return-of-sport-and-recreation
You will see on that page that they have individual guidance for the public, personal trainers and coaches, recreational team sport as well as many other elements.
3) Outdoor swimming pools and water parks can open from July 11th.
The guidance for these businesses can be found in the link below which covers providers of grassroots sports and gym and leisure facilities.
4) Indoor gyms, swimming pools, fitness studios and leisure centres can open from July 25th but specific guidelines must be followed.
The government has released guidance that must be followed, but your governing body is also a very good place to get the information from, as they will be able to provide more specific guidance for your specific sector. This article provides guidance for providers of grassroots sport and gym/leisure facilities: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/providers-of-grassroots-sport-and-gym-leisure-facilities
5) From Monday, July 13th, all beauty salons, nail salons, tanning salons, physical therapy businesses, spas and tattoo parlours can open – but they will need to follow very specific guidelines.
The guidance provided by the government can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/close-contact-services. However – it is a very good idea that you contact your governing body to ask them for more specific guidance.
One very important part of the guidance is that no services can be provided that are in what the government calls the “highest risk zone”. This refers to the area in front of the face – so that means no treatments on the face where you are facing the customer – for example, facials and eyelash treatments – will be allowed until the government advice changes.
6) Earlier in the week the government announced that during August from Monday to Wednesday in participating restaurants people will be able to have a meal for 50% less. Restaurants will need to register through the portal that the government has now opened.
You can read more about the scheme here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/get-more-information-about-the-eat-out-to-help-out-scheme/get-more-information-about-the-eat-out-to-help-out-scheme
To register for the scheme, this is the page that you will want to read through as it has all of the information about what you will need to do: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/register-your-establishment-for-the-eat-out-to-help-out-scheme
7) Further information has also been posted by the government about the reduced VAT rate for the hospitality sector. This link explains how the reduced rate will work for each of the sectors it applies to https://www.gov.uk/guidance/vat-reduced-rate-for-hospitality-holiday-accommodation-and-attractions
Further information for charging VAT on admission charges to attractions can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/vat-on-admission-charges-to-attractions. The article outlines what is considered as admission fees and what you need to do if you have other charges included in the admission fee.
I am continually monitoring the updates that the government and other business-related departments release and will continue to share that information for as long as I feel that it is beneficial to all businesses in the UK.
The information and policies are continually being updated by the government, so I urge you to keep on top of the information by visiting the relevant website for your area.
Northern Ireland: https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/
I will be trying to keep myself as informed as possible and will share relevant information on my fb business page: https://www.facebook.com/ihelmenterprises/