Covid-19 update: New Regulations in place for Businesses

New legislation relating to COVID came into force on 18th and 24th September.

1.Test & Trace. It’s now a legal obligation that certain businesses/premises collect test & trace contact details from their customers

2. QR Unique Venue Code. Venues/premises must generate a unique QR code from Government website and display prominently in their premises (from 24th September)

3. Social Distancing Management – It is now a legal responsibility that responsible persons for certain businesses (food or drink consumed on premises) must now take reasonable measures to ensure social distancing guidelines, on their premises, are strictly adhered to.

4. Premises to be closed by 10pm - The government has announced further national measures from 24th September, to address rising cases of coronavirus in England, requiring premises to be closed by 10pm and the requirement to wear face coverings.

1. Test & Trace

New regulations came into force on the 18th September, that mean it is now a legal obligation that certain premises/venues MUST collect test and trace contact details.

Details that must be captured are: 

  • Name
  • Telephone Number
  • Email Address (when the individual is unable to provide a telephone number)
  • Postal Address (when no email address is available a physical address must be provided)
  • Date and time entered premises

For full details of what is required and how data should be kept see link below:

If a person refuses to give their details to the relevant person then all reasonable steps should be taken to refuse entry.

2. QR Unique Venue Code

It is also a legal requirement that from (24th September) the premises/venue display their unique QR code poster from the Government link below:

The venue code will be linked to the new NHS app (launching 24th September). This will enable customers to ‘check themselves’ into your venue using their smartphone and your QR code issued from the above link. You’ll  need to have measures in place to make sure that customers have either checked in via the QR code or you have taken their details as listed in point 1.

Sectors that are included in the new regulations include: 

  • Restaurants
  • Cafes
  • Bars
  • Pubs
  • Hotels
  • Barbers
  • Hairdressers
  • Beauticians
  • Nail Bars
  • Sports Massage
  • Indoor Sport and Leisure Centres

For full list of businesses involved see link to regulations below:

3. Social Distancing

Premises which serve food or drink on their premises will also now be legally responsible to take all reasonable measures to ensure that:

  • No table bookings of more than six people are taken (unless exempt from regulations, e.g. a family who live together who number more than 6)
  • No persons are admitted to the premises in a group of more than six, unless one of the exemptions apply
  • No person in one group mingles with another in another group
  • an appropriate distance is maintained between tables occupied by different groups of at least two metres or one metre if there are barriers or screens between tables or tables are arranged with back to back seating, or otherwise arranged to ensure that persons sitting at one table do not face any person sitting at another table at a distance of less than two metres.
  • In addition from 28th September, A person responsible for carrying on a business of a public house, café, restaurant or bar (including a bar in a hotel or members’ club) must take all reasonable measures to stop singing on the premises by customers in groups of more than six or dancing on the premises by customers.
  • A person responsible for carrying on a business of a public house, café, restaurant or bar (including a bar in a hotel or members’ club) must ensure that no music is played on the premises which exceeds 85db(A) when measured at the source of the music.

For more details see link below: 

4. Premises to be closed by 10pm 

  • Curfew - businesses selling food or drink (including cafes, bars, pubs and restaurants), social clubs, casinos, bowling alleys, amusement arcades (and other indoor leisure centres or facilities), funfairs, theme parks, adventure parks and activities, and bingo halls, must be closed between 10pm and 5am. This will include takeaways but delivery services can continue after 10pm (from 24 September). Premises must be vacated and closed by 10pm.
  • Table service - in licensed premises, food and drink must be ordered from, and served at a table. Customers must eat and drink at a table in any premises selling food and drink to consume indoors, on site (from 24 September). Payments should be made by card and at the table where possible. Where this is not possible, payments can be made at the bar with regular sanitising of surfaces.
  • Face coverings - pub staff and customers must wear a face covering when indoors at pubs, bars, restaurants, cafes and any other premises providing hospitality except when seated at a table to eat and drink.


Further guidance and updates will be made as they become available.