What rules to expect on wearing face masks from today?

Different sectors in public transport will require a different approach across England from 19 July while supermarkets and hospitality are recommending masks but not enforcing it.

What rules to expect on wearing face masks from today?
Continue reading
Read the article

England today removes the majority of legal restrictions on social distancing, but the wearing of masks is still advised in some places.

As the country eases into step four of the lockdown removal, the government is scrapping COVID-19 measures and is advising people to take responsibility for their actions by keeping themselves and others safe from infection.

Face masks not compulsory but recommended

Face masks will no longer be required by law, however the government says it expects that people will still wear them in crowded areas such as public transport.

Several businesses and industries have revealed that they will still be enforcing the face mask rule for customers but they will differ across the country.

Public transport is one area the government has been more specific about recommending people wear face masks, although there is still no legal need to from 19 July.

However, some public transport operators and mayors have said they will continue to require them.

Most coach and bus passengers across England will not be required to wear face masks after the Confederation of Passenger Transport (CPT), which represents 95% of buses and coaches, said it would not make them compulsory.

The CPT, which represents operators including Stagecoach, First Group, Go Ahead and Arriva, said:

We expect that many people, especially in busy places, will follow the Prime Minister's call to continue to wear a face covering as a courtesy to others.

No train passengers will be forced to wear face masks, said the Rail Delivery Group (RDG), which represents all UK train and tram operators.

It said ‘rail travel is low-risk’ and claimed most carriages are ‘well ventilated by air conditioning systems or by doors and windows.’

London transport system

In the capital, passengers on all Transport for London (TfL) services—including the Tube, bus, tram, Docklands Light Railway, Overground and TfL Rail—will need to keep wearing a face covering in stations and for their entire journey unless they are exempt.

Enforcement officers in London will be able to deny access or eject passengers who are found to not be complying with the mask requirement.

TfL will also ensure taxi and private hire vehicle drivers and passengers wear masks, unless exempt.