Government guidance on closing businesses in England

Below is an extract from the guidance on closing businesses – new Regulations were published on 4 January 2021 but the rules on closing certain businesses and venues date from 20 December 2020 and remain current.

“What can be done in businesses that are closed

  • As well as specific exemptions as set out in their relevant section, any closed premises can open for the purposes of:
  • providing essential voluntary or public services (including … support to the homeless or vulnerable, hosting blood donation sessions, or support in an emergency)
  • making a film, television programme, audio programme or audio-visual advertisement
  • enabling access by the site (premises) owners or managers, staff or people authorised by them (including volunteers) for maintenance where this is reasonably necessary. This may include exhibit maintenance, animal or plant feeding, or repairs. Other work to ensure readiness to open, such as receiving deliveries of supplies, may also go ahead.”

Where businesses such as retail dealerships, indoor and outdoor showrooms and caravan parks are closed by law – which all are now throughout the UK – guidance for those premises in England states that these businesses can open for the purposes listed above.

This means that appointments for aftersales teams from manufacturers to carry out repairs on units on caravan parks can continue providing COVID secure arrangements are in place and the park is closed to general public access.  Similarly, repair work on vehicles in in closed workshops/dealerships can continue if COVID provisions are in place.   These closed businesses may also receive deliveries in readiness for opening.  This would include e.g. receiving deliveries of units on to parks and stock into dealerships.

NB guidance for Scotland

The guidance for Scotland is very similar to that for England, including requirements for non-essential retail to close and for people to stay at home.  See the Scottish government guidance here.