Covid-19: Working Safely, Lockdown and Restrictions

Working Safely

Spring 2021 Roadmap

On the 22nd February, the government published the ‘COVID-19 Response – Spring 2021’, setting out the roadmap out of the lockdown for England.

  • There will be four steps
  • There will be at least 5 weeks between each step

Step one – from 8 March

    • All schools to open
    • Stay at home order remains in place
    • People can meet one other person outside for recreation

From 29 March

      • People will be able to meet outside including in private gardens, subject to the rule of six, or provided no more than two households are meeting.
      • People will no longer be legally required to stay at home but should work from home if they can and try not to travel.
      • Outdoor sports facilities such as tennis or basketball courts and open air swimming pools can reopen and formally organised sports can restart.

Step Two –  12th April- full details available here

    • Self-catering will open for individuals or household groups only.
    • Non-essential retail will open.
    • Pubs and restaurants will begin to open for outdoors service, without curfew, and no requirement for people to order a substantial meal.
    • Zoos, theme parks, and drive-in cinemas will open

Step Three – no earlier than 17 May

    • Pubs and restaurants will open for indoor service
    •  Hotels, guesthouses and B&Bs will open
    • Pubs and restaurants will open for indoor service
    • Cinemas and theatres will open
    • Most restrictions outdoors will be lifted, subject to a limit of 30 people
    • International travel will not resume before 17 May

Step Four – no earlier than 21 June

      • All limits on social contacts will be lifted
      • Large events and performances and weddings will be able to go ahead
      • Nightclubs will open

In Addition, there will be Four Reviews

  1. Looking at whether having a vaccine or a negative test result can reduce restrictions on social contact.
  2. Piloting the impact of testing and reduced social distancing on events.
  3. Looking at how to facilitate more inbound and outbound travel – to report back by 12 April
  4. Review social distancing measures, such as the one-metre-plus rule, rules on face coverings and working from home – to report back by 21 June.

Find out more about the roadmap here


Going to work (during lockdown)

You may only leave your home for work if you cannot reasonably work from home.

Where people cannot work from home they should continue to travel to their workplace. This includes, but is not limited to, people who work in: critical national infrastructure, construction, manufacturing, childcare or education or essential public services.

This is essential to keeping the country operating and supporting sectors and employers.

Find out more here


Anyone with coronavirus symptoms can get a test. Get a free NHS test to check if you have coronavirus.

Tests for people who don’t have symptoms

Community asymptomatic testing is a major new tool to help identify and isolate individuals who have COVID-19 but do not have symptoms and may inadvertently be spreading the virus.

Alongside the deployment of tests to NHS front-line staff, social care and other critical settings, testing of asymptomatic individuals within the community can help suppress COVID-19 and offer communities a direct route out of the toughest restrictions.

  • If you run a business that employs 10 or more people, you can register to order tests for employees who cannot work from home. From 6 April, the workplace testing programme will supply home test kits to companies with over 10 workers where it is not possible to set up testing on-site, due to a lack of space or because companies operate across multiple sites. Businesses must register interest by 12 April to access free tests.
  • Smaller companies are advised to encourage employees to visit their local authority asymptomatic test facilities:
  • Cheshire East: There are two main local testing sites in Cheshire East, these are Crewe – Chester Street car park, CW1 2ER, and Macclesfield – Commercial Road, SK10 2QJ.
  • Cheshire West and Chester: Businesses with less than 250 employees are welcome to direct staff to one of the Council testing sites at Winsford Lifestyle Centre or Stanney Oaks Leisure Centre, in Ellesmere Port.
  • Warrington: There are two sites for those with no symptoms of coronavirus who cannot work from home in Warrington – one at the Halliwell Jones Stadium, the other at Grappenhall Cricket Club.

Employers of seasonal agricultural workers in the edible horticulture sector are urged to register for free workplace testing.


Other Information

Other safety measures

NHS COVID-19 app

Following the launch of the new COVID-19 app, customers and visitors in England will be able to check-in on entry with their phone instead of filling out a check-in book or tool specific to a business. This will allow NHS Test and Trace to contact customers with public health advice should there be a COVID-19 outbreak.

  • In England, using QR codes will help businesses meet the new legal requirement to record the contact details of customers, visitors and staff on their premises.
  • Create and download your QR code poster here 
  • Find out more about the NHS Covid-19 app here.

Face Coverings

Full guidance about when to wear a face covering is available here

Health and Safety and Reporting An Outbreak Guidance (including Sector Specific Guidance)

Opening Safely Suppliers

The Growth Hub appreciates that changes will be needed in your business to trade safely and successfully. We have compiled a  list of suppliers who might be able to help you make your business Covid-19 secure and support you with the financial and HR elements of this, this list is not exhaustive and we encourage you to conduct your own research before engaging with the companies listed here.