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England and Scotland announce national lockdowns and the Chancellor announces new financial packages

Published on: 06 January 2021

Boris Johnson has announced that England will go into a full national lockdown from the 5 January 2021. This will replace the tiered system until further notice. This means that there is a stay at home notice unless for essential reasons.
Hospitality and non-essential retail sectors must now shut again unless they are providing take-away food and non alcoholic drinks services (until 11pm) or click and collect/delivery.

Employees must now work from home where possible. Where this is not possible you can still travel into work. 
For the Marine Industry sectors this means the following:

Manufacturing, including but not limited to, boatbuilding and refit/repair yards can stay open with COVID-19 secure protocols in place (please see government guidance). However, it should be noted that members of the public should not be travelling to move vessels to repair yards or attend builds in progress.
Surveyors – can continue to operate and visit yards and vessels and attend sea-trials without members of the public.
Brokerage – brokerages are non essential retail and must shut to the members of the public, and employees must work from home. Enquiries can still be taken and virtual viewings given, however there must be no physical viewings or meetings with clients. Brokers can continue to sell houseboats/residential moorings and vessels as long as they are being sold as the customer's primary place of residence. It will be down to the brokers to obtain proof that is the intended purpose of the sale. Brokers will also be able to carry out other duties that cannot be done from home, such as cleaning vessels and photography as long as it does not involve meeting a member of the public (clients) and clients cannot leave home for this purpose to hand over keys, etc.
Non-essential retail including but not limited to chandleries and clothing shops must shut except for deliveries and click and collect services (where the goods are pre-ordered and collected off the premises).
Hire boat and charter vessel operations will need to close.
Hospitality services such as passenger vessels will need to close unless for very specific reasons and with very limited numbers such as holding a wake for up to six people.

The Yacht Harbour Association (TYHA) has issued guidance for marinas here.

British Marine is still awaiting industry specific guidance from the government and will update members once this is received.


You must not leave your home unless you have a reasonable excuse (for example, for work or education purposes).

Avoid car sharing with anyone from outside your household or your support bubble. See the guidance on car sharing.

If you need to use public transport, you should follow the safer travel guidance.

You can only travel internationally – or within the UK – where you first have a legally permitted reason to leave home. In addition, you should consider the public health advice in the country you are visiting.

Foreign nationals are subject to the ‘Stay at Home’ regulations. This means they cannot travel into the UK for boat sales etc.
Scotland Announces National Lockdown from 5 January 2021

Mainland Scotland is to go into lockdown from 5 January 2021 with a new legal requirement forbidding anyone from leaving their home except for essential purposes.
Amongst the limited reasonable excuses to leave your home are provisions for caring, outdoor exercise and to go to work, but only if that work cannot be done from home.  
The whole of mainland Scotland has been in the highest tier 4 restrictions and will now be going into full lockdown. The Tier 4 restrictions already made hospitality, non-essential retail, holiday accommodation, entertainment and leisure venues close and there are no changes to this. Manufacturing can continue to operate with the correct risk assessments and protocols in place but should as with other businesses be operating on a work from home basis wherever possible.
The main changes of the Scottish lockdown from Tier 4 are as follows:

The new measures will make it a legal requirement to stay at home unless there is a reasonable excuse for leaving such as essential shopping, education, childcare or to support the vulnerable. Everyone must now work from home where they can.
Other key changes include:

  • Changing the 6/2 rule to a 2/2 rule. A maximum of two people from up to two households will be able to meet outdoors. Children aged 11 and under will not be counted in that limit
  • For everyone else – including 12 to 17 year olds - outdoor exercise or recreation should only take place in a way which is consistent with the 2/2 rule
  • Under 12s will not count towards the 2/2 rule and will continue to be able to participate in organised activities outdoors
  • All schools to continue to use remote learning until the end of January, except in the case of vulnerable children and those of key workers
  • Stronger guidance on working from home is reflected in new guidance for people who are shielding. Those who are shielding and who cannot work from home are now advised not to work. The Chief Medical Officer is writing to everyone who falls into this category

Scotland also announced that from 8 January 2021 the following measures would be introduced that could affect the marine industry:

  • Prohibiting wakes and post-funeral gatherings, so that only funerals and any associated ceremonies (stone settings, ash scatterings, etc.) can take place
  • Closing some additional premises, service providers and retailers. This would include showroom elements of larger retailers and ski centres
  • Ending the 1m physical distancing exemption for workplace canteens

Financial help with the new lockdowns:

The Chancellor has announced grants for businesses to help with the latest lockdown restrictions:

Business Grants

  • One-off top up grants for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses worth up to £9,000 per property to help businesses through to the Spring
  • £594 million discretionary fund also made available to support other impacted businesses

The one-off top-ups will be granted to closed businesses as follows:

  • £4,000 for businesses with a rateable value of £15,000 or under
  • £6,000 for businesses with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000
  • £9,000 for businesses with a rateable value of over £51,000
  • Business support is a devolved policy and therefore the responsibility of the devolved administrations, which will receive additional funding as a result of these announcements in the usual manner. The Scottish Government will receive £375 million, the Welsh Government will receive £227 million, and the Northern Ireland Executive will receive £127 million

Further details on the grants will follow in guidance to accompany this announcement.
Keep up to date with all the latest COVID-19 information please visit the British Marine Coronavirus hub.