Work from home, Covid passports and more mask wearing – the new 'Plan B' rules explained as Boris Johnson introduces further restrictions following a rise in the Omicron variant

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has confirmed that it is time to move to ‘Plan B’ of the Government’s coronavirus strategy as the Omicron variant continues to rise – here is what to expect.

Wednesday, 8th December 2021, 6:54 pm

During a Downing Street press conference on Wedneday, December 8, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that further coronavirus restrictions will come into force in England from next week.

It follows a continued rise in the Omicron Covid variant across the UK which originally saw the reintroduction of masks in shops and on public transport, as well as stricter rules on those arriving into the UK.

These are the new Covid restrictions that will come into force from next week:

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has introduced further Covid restrictions during a Downing Street press briefing. Photo: PA.

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These are the new Omicron travel rules that have come into effect

Changes to work from home advice

From Monday, December 13, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced that people should work from home “if you can”.

Mr Johnson commented that you should “go to work if you must” but stated that by reducing contact with others in the workplace will help slow the transmission of the virus.

The Prime Minister said that employers are being given the rest of this week to put plans in place to allow employees to work from home.

Face coverings to be reintroduced into hospitality settings

Boris Johnson announced that the rule around the wearing of face coverings would be “further extended” as of Friday, December 10, to indoor hospitality settings.

There are some exemptions to the rule, such as eating, drinking, exercising or singing.

NHS Covid pass to be mandatory for large venues

Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed that the NHS Covid pass is to be made mandatory in England within a week’s time for nightclubs and other venues where large crowds gather.

This includes unseated door venues with more than 500 people, unseated outdoor venues with more than 4,000 people or any venue with more than 10,000 people.

Members of the public will have to prove that they have had at least two doses of a Covid vaccine or have a negative lateral flow test result to gain entry to the relevant venue.

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