Working safely during coronavirus (COVID-19)

The visitor economy

Guidance for people who work in hotels and guest accommodation, indoor and outdoor attractions, and business events and consumer shows.

Applies to: England (see guidance for Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland)

Please read the priority actions and full guidance below.

Priority actions to take - what businesses need to do to protect staff and customers

Seven steps to protect yourself, your staff and your customers during coronavirus.

  1. Complete a COVID-19 risk assessment. Share it with all your staff. Find out how to do a risk assessment.

  2. Clean more often. Increase how often you clean surfaces, especially those that are being touched a lot. Ask your staff and your customers to use hand sanitiser and wash their hands frequently.

  3. Ask your customers to wear face coverings in any indoor space or where required to do so by law. That is especially important if your customers are likely to be around people they do not normally meet. Some exemptions apply. Check when to wear one, exemptions, and how to make your own.

  4. Make sure everyone is social distancing. Make it easy for everyone to do so by putting up signs or introducing a one way system that your customers can follow.

  5. Increase ventilation by keeping doors and windows open where possible and running ventilation systems at all times.

  6. Take part in NHS Test and Trace by keeping a record of all your customers for 21 days. From 18 September, this will be enforced in law. Some exemptions apply. Check Maintaining records of staff, customers and visitors to support NHS Test and Trace for details.

  7. Turn people with coronavirus symptoms away. If a staff member (or someone in their household) or a customer has a persistent cough, a high temperature or has lost their sense of taste or smell, they should be isolating.

Four more things to be aware of if your business is part of the ‘visitor economy’:

  • From 14 September, let customers know that by law they can only visit in groups of up to 6 people (unless they are visiting as a household or support bubble which is larger than 6). Until 14 September, the current guidelines apply. Check with customers on arrival who they are with and how many people will be attending. Put up signs to remind customers to only interact with their group.
  • Encourage contactless payments. Whenever possible, use online booking and pre-payment and ask for contactless payments.
  • Manage food and drink service safely. Minimise customer self-service of food, cutlery and condiments, as well as contact between staff and guests.
  • Understand how your business interacts with the local area. Limit risk by reducing queues on the street outside, staggering check in times and opening hours to other businesses, and advising customers to avoid particular forms of transport at busy times or routes to avoid crowded areas.

These are the priority actions to make your business safe during coronavirus, you should also read the full version of the guidance below.

Introduction

This document is to help employers, employees and the self-employed in England understand how to work safely and protect their customers during the COVID-19 pandemic, keeping to the recommended social distancing guidance applicable at the time.

Public health is devolved in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales; this guidance should be considered alongside local public health and safety requirements and legislation in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. For advice to businesses in other parts of the UK please see guidance set by the Northern Ireland Executive, the Scottish Government, and the Welsh Government. Tourism is also a devolved competency; as such, this guidance is meant to complement any guidance in the Devolved Administrations, where relevant.

While this guidance applies to England, you should always consider whether there are local restrictions in place in your area. If you live, work or volunteer in an area that is experiencing a local COVID-19 outbreak and where local restrictions have been imposed, different guidance and legislation will apply. Please consult the local restrictions pages to see if any restrictions are in place in your area.

If you have any feedback for us, please email tourismheritagecovid@culture.gov.uk.

This guidance is designed to be relevant for people who work within the visitor economy; for example people who operate or run hotels and other types of accommodation (there is also a separate hotels and other guest accommodation guidance, indoor and outdoor visitor attractions guidance, and guidance for people who run or manage spaces for business or leisure events and conferences. There is also a separate guidance document on pubs and restaurants for food settings.

How to use this guidance

This document sets out guidance on how to work safely within the visitor economy and for guests and visitors to these locations while minimising the risk of spreading COVID-19. It gives practical considerations of how guidance can be applied in the workplace and at these locations which, in the case of the visitor economy, will be different for each premises or outlet. This guidance only relates to activities permitted by Her Majesty’s Government regulation.

Each business will need to translate this into the specific actions it needs to take, depending on the nature of their business, including the size and type of business, how it is organised, operated, managed and regulated. A site by site approach is essential and COVID-19 risk assessment for premises will be unique. Therefore this guidance should be used to translate to whatever areas are relevant to your business and any measures that are taken should fit safely with any operational needs.

This guidance does not supersede any legal obligations relating to health and safety, employment or equalities and it is important that as a business or an employer you continue to comply with your existing obligations, including those relating to individuals with protected characteristics. It contains non-statutory guidance to take into account when complying with these existing obligations. When considering how to apply this guidance, take into account agency workers, contractors and other people, as well as your employees.

To help you decide which actions to take as a business, you need to carry out an appropriate COVID-19 risk assessment, at a business and site level, just as you would for other health and safety related hazards. This risk assessment must be done in consultation with unions or workers.

We know many people are also keen to return to or contribute to volunteering. Organisations have a duty of care to volunteers to ensure as far as reasonably practicable they are not exposed to risks to their health and safety. This guidance around working safely during COVID-19 should ensure that volunteers are afforded the same level of protection to their health and safety as employees, the self-employed and customers.

Recognising that within the visitor economy it is common practice to operate both in your own and in third parties’ premises or venues, and to hire equipment from third parties, collaboration between groups, organisations and businesses will likely be needed to give proper effect to this guidance.

What do we mean by ‘the visitor economy’?

The visitor economy is much broader than tourism and encompasses all staying and non-staying visitors and the activities and expenditure involved in supplying products and services for visitors by both the private and public sectors.

The visitor economy also encompasses a multitude of different working environments, from outdoor paid for attractions like theme parks to indoor attractions like stately homes or planetariums.

It also includes a variety of activities and events which take place at hotels, convention and exhibition centres and conference halls and meeting rooms.

This guidance is aimed at business owners, operators and workers in the following areas:

  • hotels and other guest accommodation (including self-catering accommodation, B&Bs, hostels, camping, holiday homes, caravan parks, boats and other types of accommodation including short-term letting). This guidance should be read in conjunction with the working safely in hotels and other accommodation guidance.
  • indoor and outdoor attractions (e.g. arcades, guided tours, theme parks, family entertainment centres, funfairs, zoos, and aquariums). The events and entertainment guidance may also be useful for attractions that move around (e.g. travelling funfairs).
  • business events (e.g. conferences, exhibitions, conventions, consumer/trade shows and other events and meetings). It is expected that from 1 October events will be allowed, in line with guidance set out in section 2.2.3, and dependent on whether the virus remains around or below current levels into the autumn.

The guidance should also be read in conjunction with other guidance on working safely during coronavirus, the safer travel guidance and other available sector guidance.

1. Thinking about risk

In this section

Objective: That all employers carry out a COVID-19 risk assessment.

COVID-19 is a public health emergency. Everyone needs to assess and manage the risks of COVID-19, and in particular businesses should consider the risks to their workers and customers. As an employer, you also have a legal responsibility to protect workers and others from risk to their health and safety. This means you need to think about the risks they face and do everything reasonably practicable to minimise them, recognising you cannot completely eliminate the risk of COVID-19.

You must make sure that the risk assessment for your business addresses the risks of COVID-19, using this guidance to inform your decisions and control measures. A risk assessment is not about creating huge amounts of paperwork, but rather about identifying sensible measures to control the risks in your workplace. If you have fewer than 5 workers, or are self-employed, you don’t have to write anything down as part of your risk assessment. Your risk assessment will help you decide whether you have done everything you need to. The Health and Safety Executive has guidance for business on how to manage risk and risk assessment at work along with specific advice to help control the risk of coronavirus in workplaces.

Employers have a duty to consult their people on health and safety. In a small business, you might choose to consult your workers directly. Larger businesses may consult through a health and safety representative, chosen by your employees or selected by a trade union. You can do this by listening and talking to them about the work and how you will manage risks from COVID-19. The people who do the work are often the best people to understand the risks in the workplace and will have a view on how to work safely. Involving them in making decisions shows that you take their health and safety seriously. You must consult with the health and safety representative selected by a recognised trade union or, if there isn’t one, a representative chosen by workers. As an employer, you cannot decide who the representative will be.

At its most effective, full involvement of your workers creates a culture where relationships between employers and workers are based on collaboration, trust and joint problem solving. As is normal practice, workers should be involved in assessing workplace risks and the development and review of workplace health and safety policies in partnership with the employer.

Employers and workers should always come together to resolve issues. If concerns still cannot be resolved, see below for further steps you can take.

How to raise a concern if you are an employee:

First, speak to your employer.

  • contact your employee representative, if your workplace has one
  • contact your trade union if you have one
  • contact HSE at:

HSE COVID-19 enquiries
Telephone: 0300 790 6787 (Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 5pm)
Online: working safely enquiry form

1.1 Managing risk

Objective: To reduce risk to the lowest reasonably practicable level by taking preventative measures, in order of priority

Operators in the visitor economy have a duty to reduce workplace risk to the lowest reasonably practicable level by taking preventative measures. Employers must work with any other employers or contractors sharing the workplace so that everybody’s health and safety is protected. In the context of COVID-19 this means protecting the health and safety of your workers and customers by working through these steps in order:

  1. In every workplace, increasing the frequency of handwashing and surface cleaning.

  2. Businesses and workplaces should make every reasonable effort to ensure their employees can work safely. From 1 August 2020, this may be working from home, or within the workplace if COVID-19 secure guidelines are followed closely.

  3. When in the workplace, everyone should make every reasonable effort to comply with the social distancing guidelines set out by the government (2m, or 1m with risk mitigation where 2m is not viable).

  4. Where the social distancing guidelines cannot be followed in full, in relation to a particular activity, businesses should consider whether that activity needs to continue for the business to operate, and, if so, take all the mitigating actions possible to reduce the risk of transmission between their staff.

  5. Further mitigating actions include:

    – increasing the frequency of hand washing and surface cleaning, including disinfection of high footfall areas or common touchpoints with particular attention to toilets/restrooms.
    – keeping the activity time of any activity where social distancing cannot be maintained as short as possible
    – using screens or barriers to separate people from each other
    – using back-to-back or side-to-side working (rather than face-to-face) whenever possible
    – reducing the number of people each person has contact with by using ‘fixed teams or partnering’ (so each person works with only a few others)
    – Using screens or barriers to separate people from each other.

  6. Finally, if people must work face-to-face for a sustained period with more than a small group of fixed partners, then you will need to assess whether the activity can safely go ahead. No one should be forced to work in an unsafe work environment.

  7. In your assessment you should have particular regard to whether the people doing the work are especially vulnerable to COVID-19.

The recommendations in the rest of this document are ones you must consider as you go through this process. You could also consider any advice that has been produced specifically for your sector, for example by trade associations or trades unions. UKHospitality has further information on many parts of the visitor economy that may help with this process, including hotels and other guest accommodation, restaurants, pubs and bars, amusement parks and holiday parks.

If you have not already done so, you should carry out an assessment of the risks posed by COVID-19 in your workplace as soon as possible. If you are currently operating, you are likely to have gone through a lot of this thinking already. When a building or space is repurposed - for example when there is any change in use or type or use or other circumstance - there needs to be a fire risk assessment. More information can be found on the Health and Safety Executive website.

You should consider the security implications of any changes you intend to make to your operations and practices in response to COVID-19, as any revisions may present new or altered security risks or issues with accessibility which may need mitigations. Sections 2.3 outlines the key security considerations and advice.

Whilst the risk to health from COVID-19 is at the forefront of everyone’s minds, the threat of terrorism nonetheless remains substantial. It is essential that businesses and other organisations remain cognisant of these threats as they look to adjust their operations, ensuring that security measures are proactively adapted to support and complement other changes.

Where the enforcing authority, such as the HSE or your local authority, identifies employers who are not taking action to comply with the relevant public health legislation and guidance to control public health risks, they are empowered to take a range of actions to improve control of workplace risks. For example, this would cover employers not taking appropriate action to ensure social distancing, where possible.

Failure to complete a risk assessment which takes account of COVID-19, or completing a risk assessment but failing to put in place sufficient measures to manage the risk of COVID-19, could constitute a breach of health and safety law. The actions the enforcing authority can take include the provision of specific advice to employers to support them to achieve the required standard, through to issuing enforcement notices to help secure improvements. Serious breaches and failure to comply with enforcement notices can constitute a criminal offence, with serious fines and even imprisonment for up to two years. There is also a wider system of enforcement, which includes specific obligations and conditions for licensed premises.

Employers are expected to respond to any advice or notices issued by enforcing authorities rapidly and are required to do so within any timescales imposed by the enforcing authorities. The vast majority of employers are responsible and will join with the UK’s fight against COVID-19 by working with the Government and their sector bodies to protect their workers and the public. However, inspectors are carrying out compliance checks nationwide to ensure that employers are taking the necessary steps.

1.2 Sharing the results of your risk assessment

You must share the results of your risk assessment with your workforce. If possible, you should consider publishing the results on your website (and we would expect all businesses with over 50 workers to do so).

We would expect all businesses to demonstrate to their workers and customers that they have properly assessed their risk and taken appropriate measures to mitigate this. You should do this by displaying a notification in a prominent place in your business and on your website, if you have one.

Below you will find a notice you should display in your workplace to show you have followed this guidance.

There may also be other industry standards or marks that you can use to demonstrate to any visitors, guests and customers that you have thought carefully about risk.

2. Managing your customers, visitors and contractors

In this section

2.1 Top level considerations for all parts of the visitor economy

Objective: To provide top level considerations for managing customers, visitors and contractors.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Assessing the number of customers, or crowd density, that can reasonably enable social distancing within any space. This will vary depending on layout or usage. This will require taking into account the total floorspace as well as pinch points and busy areas.

  2. For indoor and outdoor attractions, and business event venues, limit the number of customers or adjust the crowd density at any time. For example, by implementing timed ticketing or asking customers to book ahead where possible.

  3. Consider how customers and employees will move in congestion areas, for example doorways between adjacent indoor spaces and outdoor spaces.

  4. Reviewing how customers move through and around the venue (indoors and outdoors) and considering how you could adjust the flow of customers and employees to reduce congestion and contact; for example, queue management or one-way flow, where possible.

  5. Managing queues to ensure they do not cause a risk to individuals or other businesses, for example by introducing queuing systems, using barriers and having staff direct customers. This may include using outside premises for queuing where available and safe, for example some car parks.

  6. Ensuring any changes to entry, exit and queue management take into account reasonable adjustments for those who need them, including disabled customers. For example, maintaining pedestrian and parking access for disabled customers.

  7. Consider the particular needs of those with protected characteristics, such as those who are hearing or visually impaired.

  8. Encouraging customers to use handwashing facilities or hand sanitiser (where washing facilities are not available) as they enter the premises to reduce the risk of transmission by touching products or surfaces.

  9. Reminding customers who are accompanied by children that they are responsible for supervising them at all times and should follow social distancing guidelines.

  10. Working with your local authority and landlord to take into account the impact of your processes, including queues, on public spaces such as high streets and public car parks and fire escapes outside and within the public realm.

  11. Having clearly designated positions from which employees can provide assistance to customers whilst maintaining social distance.

  12. Working with neighbouring businesses and local authorities to consider how to stagger the number of people arriving throughout the day; for example, by staggering opening hours which could help reduce the demand on public transport at key times and avoid overcrowding.

  13. For any activities which involve passing objects around (e.g. in casinos or indoor attractions, specifically including environments such as laser tag) the following steps should be considered:

    – Putting in place picking up and dropping off collection points where possible, rather than passing goods hand to hand
    -Regular cleaning of these objects or replacement with new objects as and when needed
    - Encouraging increased handwashing and introducing more handwashing facilities for workers and customers or providing hand sanitiser where this is not practical.

  14. Where changing facilities and toilets are required, setting clear use and more frequent cleaning guidance for toilets, showers, lockers and changing rooms to ensure they are kept clean and clear of personal items, where possible safe ventilation is increased and that social distancing is achieved as much as possible, including for example by staggered shift usage.

  15. Where a premises delivers a mix of services, ensuring only those services that are permitted to be open are available. For example, a hairdresser should ensure that beauty or nail treatments are not offered; and a community or leisure centre should not host indoor sports or fitness activity.

  16. Providing written or spoken communication of the latest guidelines to both workers and customers inside and outside the venue. You should may want to display posters or information setting out how customers should behave at your venue to keep everyone safe.

  17. Any requirement or recommendation for visitors or guests to wear face coverings when queuing or while inside the attraction/event or hotel should be consistent with the latest government guidance. Face coverings can be made at home and visitors should be signposted to the latest government guidance.

People should continue to socially distance from those they do not live with wherever possible. From Monday 14 September, you must not meet with people from other households socially in groups of more than six. The latest information on social contact can be found in the meeting others safely (social distancing) guidance.

It is against the law for gatherings of more than 30 people to take place in private homes (including gardens and other outdoor spaces).

Businesses and venues following COVID-19 Secure guidelines can host larger groups, if this is in accordance with the relevant guidance for their sector. Events for larger groups may also take place in public outdoor spaces that are organised by businesses, charitable or political organisations, and public bodies, provided they take reasonable steps to mitigate the risk of transmission, in line with COVID-19 Secure guidance and including completion of a risk assessment.

In particular, those operating venues or running events following COVID-19 Secure guidelines should take additional steps to ensure the safety of the public and prevent large gatherings or mass events from taking place.

From 15 August, venues can permit indoor performances to socially distanced audiences, including drama, comedy and music. Performances must be in line with the Performing Arts guidance.

Individual businesses or venues should consider the cumulative impact of many venues re-opening in a small area. This means working with local authorities, neighbouring businesses and travel operators to assess this risk and applying additional mitigations. These could include:

  • further lowering capacity - even if it is possible to safely seat a number of people inside a venue, it may not be safe for them all to travel or enter that venue
  • staggering entry times with other venues and taking steps to avoid queues building up in surrounding areas.
  • arranging one-way travel routes between transport hubs and venues
  • advising patrons to avoid particular forms of transport or routes and to avoid crowded areas when in transit to the venue

Local authorities should avoid issuing licenses for events that could lead to larger gatherings forming and provide advice to businesses on how to manage events of this type. If appropriate, the government has powers under schedule 22 of the Coronavirus Act 2020 to close venues hosting large gatherings or prohibit certain events (or types of event) from taking place.

All venues should ensure that steps are taken to avoid people needing to unduly raise their voices to each other. This includes - but is not limited to - refraining from playing music or broadcasts that may encourage shouting, including if played at a volume that makes normal conversation difficult. This is because of the potential for increased risk of transmission - particularly from aerosol and droplet transmission. We will develop further guidance, based on scientific evidence, to enable these activities as soon as possible. You should take similar steps to prevent other close contact activities - such as communal dancing - and reconfigure entertainment spaces to enable customers to be seated at a fixed safe distance rather than standing. For example, repurposing dance floors for customer seating.

Reconfiguring entertainment spaces to enable customers to be seated at a fixed safe distance rather than standing. For example, repurposing dance floors for customer seating.

Making customers aware of, and encouraging compliance with, limits on gatherings.From Monday 14 September, you must not meet with people from other households socially in groups of more than six.

The opening up of the economy following the COVID-19 outbreak is being supported by NHS Test and Trace. You must keep a temporary record of your customers and visitors for 21 days, in a way that is manageable for your business, and assist NHS Test and Trace with requests for that data if needed. This could help contain clusters or outbreaks. Many businesses that take bookings already have systems for recording their customers and visitors – including restaurants, hotels, and hair salons. If you do not already do this, you should do so to help fight the virus. We have worked with industry and relevant bodies to design a system in line with data protection legislation, details of which can be found in the Maintaining records of staff, customers and visitors to support NHS Test and Trace guidance.

2.2 Providing and explaining available guidance

Objective: To provide links to relevant industry sources and specific resources for each part of the visitor economy

Consideration should be given to the sector specific guidance and resources highlighted below, where relevant.

The government has also published guidance on:

UKHospitality has a number of resources available on its website to aid reopening. Whilst it is not comprehensive, it can be used in conjunction with the links below to provide further information and resources for your risk assessment. This UKHospitality guidance is applicable to businesses UK-wide and adaptable to local circumstances.

Guidance referenced below from a trade body or association may include best practice documents, templates and more detailed sector specific advice on certain environments. Industry bodies may also be able to provide examples or templates to enable you to carry out an appropriate risk assessment.

2.2.1 Hotels and Accommodation

  • Please refer to the separate hotels and other guest accommodation guidance document. Whilst hotels and other guest accommodation have been able to reopen on 4 July, shared facilities (e.g. shared sleeping spaces such as dormitories, guest kitchens, and communal spaces such as TV rooms where social distancing cannot be managed within current government guidelines) should remain closed. Shared ablutionary facilities (showers and toilets) can remain open but should adhere to all government guidelines to minimise the risk of transmission.
  • UKHospitality has published guidance which includes advice for hotels and accommodation, pubs and restaurants.
  • Camping/ caravanning/ motorhomes and holiday parks - in addition to the UKHospitality guidance, which includes these sectors in more detail, associations such as the National Caravan Council, British Holiday and Home Parks Association have resources on their websites with advice and further information.
  • British Marine has information on waterways and advice on areas such as hotel boats and holiday boat hire.
  • Self catering accommodation and short term lets - in addition to the hotels and other guest accommodation guidance and UKHospitality guidance, the Professional Association of Self Caterers; the B&B Association; the Short Term Accommodation Association and the Country Land and Business Association all have further information available on their websites
  • Bars, restaurants, cafes and catering: please refer to the pubs and restaurants guidance, which also has advice on catering. The British Beer and Pub Association can also provide further resources and information.

2.2.2 Indoor and outdoor attractions

  • UK Hospitality has published guidance including advice for amusement parks, attractions and family entertainment centres.
  • The Association of Leading Visitor Attractions (ALVA) has developed guidance for individual attractions amongst their members and is sharing templates / best practice examples to enable risk assessments for indoor and outdoor attractions.
  • Other relevant guidance for museums has been drafted by the National Museum Directors Council
  • From 15 August, venues can permit indoor performances to socially distanced audiences, including drama, comedy and music. Performances must be in line with the Performing Arts guidance.
  • For swimming pools, spa pools/hot tubs and gyms, more information is provided in the guidance for people who work in gym/leisure facilities.
  • BIAZA (British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums) has resources and guidance available for zoos and aquariums.
  • Guidance on accessing green spaces
  • From 15 August 2020, soft-play areas, bowling alleys, indoor skating rinks and casinos have been allowed to open.
  • From 15 August 2020, guidance that receptions and other celebrations for weddings and civil partnerships should not take place will no longer apply. Receptions and celebrations may take place in the form of a sit-down meal, but only where they can be done in a COVID-19 secure environment/venue, and we advise there should be no more than 30 people attending. See further guidance on wedding and civil partnerships receptions and celebrations.
  • Guided tours of up to 30 people may take place indoors or outdoors provided businesses undertake risk assessments in line with this guidance document and put any necessary mitigations in place.

2.2.3 Business events

Meetings of up to 30 people indoors are allowed in permitted venues if social distancing can be maintained and the venue can demonstrate it has followed the COVID-19 guidance. If permitted venues have multiple, separate meeting facilities, these can be hired out simultaneously for separate meetings/events if social distancing can be maintained, groups can be kept separate, and the venue can demonstrate it has followed the COVID-19 guidance. Business meetings and events of over 30 people should not currently take place in any venue. Banqueting and private dining events should not currently take place in any venue.

From 15 August, exhibition and conference centres are also allowed to show small groups (of up to 30 people, with social distancing requirements) around to view the facilities and plan future events, and to enable government backed pilots to take place. Where such venues have small, separate and directly accessible meeting facilities as part of the site, these may be used to host business meetings and events of up to 30 people if social distancing can be maintained, groups can be kept separate, and the venue can demonstrate it has followed the COVID-19 guidance. Business meetings and events of over 30 people should not currently take place in conference centres and exhibition halls.

From 1 October, it is expected that events of all types (e.g. trade shows, consumer shows, exhibitions, conferences) will be allowed at a capacity allowing for compliance with social distancing of 2m, or 1m with mitigation (approximately equivalent to a density of 10㎡ per person). Where such events involve people speaking loudly for prolonged periods of time any mitigation must include particular attention to the ventilation of the spaces. This will be subject to the latest public health advice.

The following trade associations have published guidance on business events, which events organisers and venues should make reference to when developing risk assessments for events:

  • The Association of Event Organisers will publish guidance specifically for exhibition, trade fairs and consumer shows to reopen

  • The Meetings Industry Association as produced guidance specifically for conferences and meetings venues, which is also wrapped into the wider UKHospitality guidance

  • You should consider the relevant sections of workplace guidance as well as relevant guidance on pubs and restaurants and the UKHospitality guidance for catering requirements

  • Outdoor events (e.g. including agriculture shows and festivals) are covered by events guidance drafted by the Events Industry Forum

  • Events taking place in heritage attractions/buildings should read 2.2.4 and follow through to Historic England guidance.

Business meetings

Objective: To reduce transmission due to face-to-face meetings and maintain social distancing in meetings.

Steps that will be needed will include:

  1. Preventing the attendance of anyone who is symptomatic; has recently been symptomatic; tested positive for COVID-19; or if they are a contact of someone symptomatic or has been identified by the NHS Test & Trace programme as someone who has been a close contact of a case. See current guidance for people who have symptoms and those who live with others who have symptoms.

  2. Avoiding the potential for transmission of COVID-19 during meetings, for example avoiding sharing pens and other objects.

  3. Encouraging customers to use handwashing facilities or hand sanitiser (where washing facilities are not available) as they enter the premises to reduce the risk of transmission by touching products or surfaces.

  4. Ensuring that meeting rooms are cleaned thoroughly between users and the frequent touch points such as door handles and surfaces are continuously kept clean through an event.

  5. Ensuring that social distancing applies to all parts of a premises where the meeting is being conducted, not just the place where people spend most of their time, but also entrances and exits, break rooms, canteens and similar settings. These are often the most challenging areas to maintain social distancing.

  6. Holding meetings outdoors or in well-ventilated rooms whenever possible. See below for more information on air ventilation.

  7. Having socially distanced seating and/or spacing out any tables to meet social distancing requirements.

  8. When indoors avoid those speaking doing so directly face to face with other participants whenever possible.

  9. Taking steps to avoid loud speaking or shouting, such as not using background music and the use of microphones.

  10. For areas where regular meetings take place, using floor signage to help people maintain social distancing.

The opening up of the economy following the COVID-19 outbreak is being supported by NHS Test and Trace. You should assist this service by keeping a temporary record of your customers and visitors for 21 days, in a way that is manageable for your business but effective for managing disease transmission risks, and assist NHS Test and Trace with requests for that data if needed.

People are also strongly encouraged to wear a face covering in any enclosed public space where there are people they do not normally meet.

Conferences and events

In addition to interventions above, the following mitigations should be meticulously applied when planning business and consumer trade events:

  • Crowd Density Standard: at a capacity allowing for compliance with social distancing of 2m, or 1m with mitigation (approximately equivalent to a density of 10㎡ per person)

  • Controlled entry: staggering admission to ensure socially distanced arrival

  • Managing queues outside the venue to ensure they do not cause a risk to individuals or other businesses, for example by introducing queuing systems, using barriers and having staff direct customers

  • Controlled flow during an event: introducing one-way systems and timed tickets to control flow and alleviate congestion

  • Providing floor markings, where appropriate, and signage to remind both workers and customers to follow to social distancing wherever possible

  • Assigning appropriately distanced seating where events have a seated element and encourage seated events

  • Ensuring that on site speakers are subject to restrictions on live performances - see performing arts guidance for more information

The opening up of the economy following the COVID-19 outbreak is being supported by NHS Test and Trace. You should assist this service by keeping a temporary record of your customers and visitors for 21 days, in a way that is manageable for your business but effective for managing disease transmission risks, and assist NHS Test and Trace with requests for that data if needed.

People are also strongly encouraged to wear a face covering in any enclosed public space where there are people they do not normally meet.

Air extraction and ventilation measures

Ventilation is an important part of mitigating against the transmission of COVID-19. Ventilation into the building should be optimised to ensure a fresh air supply is provided to all areas of the facility and increased wherever possible.

You should consider:

  • Increasing the existing ventilation rate by fully opening dampers and running fans on full speed

  • Operating the ventilation system 24 hours a day

  • Increase the frequency of filter changes

  • In the absence of known ventilation rates, a carbon dioxide sensor shall be used as a surrogate indicator to switch on additional mechanical ventilation or open windows.

Further guidance is provided in the CIBSE COVID-19 Ventilation guidance.

Facilities

Toilets: see 5.3.1 for guidance on toilets

Catering: Basic refreshments can be provided at meetings and events, following the COVID-19 guidance for bars, pubs and takeaway services. However we advise against extended sit down meals for large groups.

Transport

Events should offer staggered and timed entry/exit to limit numbers of people using public transport at any time

For very large events, consideration should be given to managing the zone around the venue. The external zone (also known as ‘the last mile’) lies immediately beyond the outer perimeter of a large venue and consists of a network of routes or areas, often leading to transport hubs. The management of this area is considered key to the safe and secure arrival and departure of visitors.

Consideration will need to be given to:

  • the acceptable number of passengers on public transport to and from the venue

  • the frequency of service and capacity of public transport hubs

  • the size, location and design of the venue

  • parking facilities, bike routes, walking routes, and

  • the environment within the area, particularly for hospitality venues

To address these considerations and put any necessary mitigations in place, the event organisers - with the venue - should develop a transport management plan to ensure integration of visitor considerations. They should also ensure, where relevant, that the SAG / Local Authority / public transport providers are fully engaged in its approval. The transport management plan should consider, but not be limited to:

  • The capacity of local public transport systems (service frequency and transport hub size/configuration), including a requirement to liaise with local and national transport providers to increase service frequency, where needed

  • The requirement for additional car/bike parking at the venue

  • Liaison with relevant Local Authorities and businesses to arrange and manage one-way travel routes, where possible, between transport hubs and the venue to increase visitor safety, and minimise public gatherings outside of the event footprint, such as in visiting local pubs and other businesses in line with wider public health guidance relevant to gatherings and to those sectors.

Follow guidance on urban centres for transport interchanges.

For private transport, review the guidance on safer transport and safer guidance for passengers. This provides guidance for activities such as car sharing.

Providing additional parking or facilities such as bike-racks to help people walk, run or cycle to the event where possible.

2.2.4 Heritage attractions and buildings

DCMS and Historic England have drafted guidance on recommendations specifically for heritage or listed buildings. If part or all of your business includes heritage assets or listed buildings, please also refer to this for guidance to enable you to open and operate.

2.3 Overarching security considerations

Adapting to COVID-19 measures will inevitably result in changes to operating policies, processes and procedures of accommodation providers, indoor and outdoor attractions and business event centres and venues. Any changes should always be considered alongside security implications. If you have a security department or manager, they should be consulted to help ensure good security is maintained as far as possible and that there are no unintended security consequences as a result of changes. This should be achieved by conducting a security risk assessment.

Specific examples of where security implications may arise are: queueing, search and screening (where this has been directed by a wider government policy on security), maintaining vigilance for potential threats, and access controls. There may be others that your organisation will need to consider.

2.3.1 Queues and social distancing

Whilst dense crowding is unlikely if social distancing is operating correctly, the revised layout of spaces may present new security risks, particularly where multiple queues are created.

Considerations include:

  • Operators should try and organise queuing within existing protected areas; Operators should NOT remove any security features or useful street furniture items without considering protective security in the round.
  • If queuing is only possible outside of protected areas then consider and mitigate the vulnerabilities by: routing queues behind permanent physical structures (e.g. street furniture, bollards, trolley parks and bike racks) to provide a visual deterrent and delay; closing off vehicle access to shared spaces; adjusting servicing and delivery times; reducing the opportunities for vehicles (including potentially hostile vehicles) to interact with pedestrians; erecting robust barriers; introducing a reduced speed limit or traffic calming measures.
  • Operators should be careful to avoid giving credible, detailed information that could help a hostile entity identify an attractive target and carry out an attack. In particular, this should not be included in detailed risk assessments published on public websites under Section 1.2. Be mindful of messaging, both at the site and particularly on-line, which covers detailed information about queue locations and times, the number of people expected, and suggesting removal of security features such as street furniture, bollards etc.

2.3.2 Search and screening

  • Conduct of physical search and screening of staff, contractors and visitors may need adapting in order to adhere to social distancing measures.
  • To maintain effective security and deterrence, search and screening should still be conducted as appropriate and in line with the organisation’s policies.
  • Ensure security staff are and feel safe. For example, having access to hand-washing facilities, and that they are able and confident to raise any concerns.
  • The Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) has published guidance on adapting existing search and screening processes to take account of physical distancing. Details are also available from your local Police Counter Terrorism Security Advisor (CTSA), which are available online.

2.3.3. Staff, security officers and stewarding

It is vital for staff to remain vigilant and act on potential security threats including terrorism and wider criminality. It is advised to:

  • Continue to ensure that awareness of security threats is raised alongside safety and health risks through staff briefings.
  • Whilst stewards and security officers may be focused on managing people and queues for COVID-19 safety reasons, they should continue to remain vigilant for and report any suspicious activity as soon as possible.
  • Ideally consider providing separate stewarding to manage the social distancing and other safety aspects to enable your security staff to focus on their core responsibilities to keep the site safe from threats.
  • Ensure there is a good communication system in place to inform people of any incident. Carry out a short exercise or test to check procedures and equipment for this are working correctly.

2.3.4 Restricted entry points

  • Restricted access entry points, such as those facilitated by keypad, biometrics and/or pass should remain fully in operation. They should not be deactivated.
  • Pin pads and biometrics should be highlighted as “touch points” and cleaned regularly (note: generally, they are touched less than door handles)
  • Access control (staff) proximity cards will work up to 10cm from the reader. Staff can be informed that there is no need to physically touch the card on the reader.

3. Who should go to work?

In this section

Objective: Employers should ensure workplaces are safe whilst also enabling working from home.

In order to keep the virus under control, it is important that people work safely. Working from home remains one way to do this. However, the risk of transmission can be substantially reduced if COVID-19 secure guidelines are followed closely. Employers should consult with their employees to determine who, from the 1 August 2020, can come into the workplace safely taking account of a person’s journey, childcare responsibilities, protected characteristics, and other individual circumstances. Extra consideration should be given to those people at higher risk. Businesses should consider the impact of workplace reopening on local transport, and take appropriate mitigating actions (e.g. staggered start and finish times for staff). When it is decided that workers should come into their place of work then this will need to be reflected in the COVID-19 risk assessment and actions taken to manage the risks of transmission in line with this guidance. It is vital employers engage with workers to ensure they feel safe returning to work, and they should not force anyone into an unsafe workplace.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Consider the maximum number of people who can be safely accommodated on site.

  2. Planning for a phased return to work for people safely and effectively.

  3. Monitoring the wellbeing of people who are working from home and helping them stay connected to the rest of the workforce, especially if the majority of their colleagues are on-site.

  4. Keeping in touch with off-site workers on their working arrangements including their welfare, mental and physical health and personal security.

  5. Providing equipment for people to work at home safely and effectively, for example, remote access to work systems.

3.1 Protecting people who are at higher risk

Objective: To protect clinically vulnerable and clinically extremely vulnerable individuals.

Clinically extremely vulnerable individuals may be advised not to work outside the home if the prevalence of disease in the community is very high. Current advice can be found in the protecting people who are clinically extremely vulnerable guidance.

If clinically vulnerable individuals cannot work from home, they should be offered the option of the safest available on-site roles, enabling them to stay at the recommended distance away from others. If they have to spend time within this distance of others, you should carefully assess whether the activity should continue. If so, further mitigating actions should be taken to reduce the risk of transmission between individuals (see Section 3 for examples of actions that can be taken). As for any workplace risk you must take into account specific duties to those with protected characteristics, including, for example, expectant mothers who are, as always, entitled to suspension on full pay if suitable roles cannot be found.

See current guidance for advice on who is in the clinically extremely vulnerable and clinically vulnerable groups.

3.2 People who need to self-isolate

Objective: To make sure individuals who are advised to stay at home to prevent the spread of infection under existing government guidance do not physically come to work. This includes individuals who have symptoms of COVID-19 and/or have tested positive for COVID-19, those who live in a household or are in a support bubble with someone who has symptoms or tested positive for COVID-19, and those who are advised to self-isolate as part of the government’s test and trace service.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19—a high temperature, new and persistent cough or anosmia, however mild, you should self-isolate for at least 10 days from when your symptoms started OR if you are not experiencing symptoms but have tested positive for COVID-19 you should self-isolate for at least 10 days starting from the day the test was taken.

If you have tested positive whilst not experiencing symptoms but develop symptoms during the isolation period, you should restart the 10 day isolation period from the day you develop symptoms.

This only applies to those who begin their self-isolation on or after 30 July.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Enabling workers to work from home while self-isolating if appropriate.

  2. See current guidance for employees and employers relating to statutory sick pay due to COVID-19.

  3. See current guidance for people who have symptoms and those who live with others who have symptoms.

3.3 Equality in the workplace

Objective: To make sure that nobody is discriminated against.

In applying this guidance, employers should be mindful of the particular needs of different groups of workers or individuals. For instance, employers have a duty to make reasonable adjustments to avoid disabled workers being put at a disadvantage compared to non-disabled people in the workplace.

It is breaking the law to discriminate, directly or indirectly, against anyone because of a protected characteristic such as age, ethnicity, sex or disability.

Employers also have particular responsibilities towards disabled workers and those who are new or expectant mothers.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Understanding and taking into account the particular circumstances of those with protected characteristics.

  2. Involving and communicating appropriately with workers whose protected characteristics might either expose them to a different degree of risk, or might make any steps you are thinking about inappropriate or challenging for them.

  3. Considering whether you need to put in place any particular measures or adjustments to take account of your duties under the equalities legislation.

  4. Making reasonable adjustments to avoid disabled workers being put at a disadvantage, and assessing the health and safety risks for new or expectant mothers.

  5. Understanding and responding to the concerns of those who consider themselves at increased risk.

  6. Making sure that the steps you take do not have an unjustifiable negative impact on some groups compared to others, for example, those with caring responsibilities or those with religious commitments.

4. Social distancing for workers

In this section

Objective: To maintain social distancing wherever possible, including while arriving at and departing from work, while in work and when travelling between sites.

You should maintain social distancing in the workplace wherever possible.

Where the social distancing guidelines cannot be followed in full in relation to a particular activity, businesses should consider whether that activity needs to continue for the business to operate, and, if so, take all the mitigating actions possible to reduce the risk of transmission between their staff.

Mitigating actions include:

  • further increasing the frequency of hand washing and surface cleaning, including disinfecting of heavy footfall and frequent touch points, with particular attention to shared showers, changing rooms, and toilets/restrooms
  • provision of hand sanitiser in areas where poor access to hand washing
  • keeping the activity time involved as short as possible
  • using screens or barriers to separate people from each other
  • using back-to-back or side-to-side working (rather than face-to-face) whenever possible
  • reducing the number of people each person has contact with by using ‘fixed teams or partnering’ (so each person works with only a few others)
  • Using screens or barriers to separate people from each other. These are particularly appropriate where an individual cannot maintain social distancing and is in contact with a high volume of people such as ticket office staff.

Social distancing applies to all parts of a premises business is conducted, not just the place where people spend most of their time, but also entrances and exits, break rooms, canteens and similar settings. These are often the most challenging areas to maintain social distancing.

4.1 Coming to work and leaving work

Objective: To maintain social distancing wherever possible for workers, on arrival and departure and to enable handwashing upon arrival.

More information can be found in the guidance on safer transport and safer guidance for passengers.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Staggering arrival and departure times at work to reduce crowding into and out of the workplace, taking account of the impact on those with protected characteristics.

  2. Providing additional parking or facilities such as bike-racks to help people walk, run or cycle to work where possible.

  3. Limiting passengers in corporate vehicles, for example, work minibuses. This could include leaving seats empty.

  4. Reducing congestion, for example, by having more entry points to the workplace in larger stores.

  5. Using markings and introducing one-way flow at entry and exit points, which are back of house or employee only and where appropriate, taking into account premises structure, style of operation and customer profile.

  6. Providing handwashing facilities (or hand sanitiser where not possible) for workers at entry and exit points.

  7. Providing alternatives to touch-based security devices such as keypads.

  8. Defining process alternatives for entry/exit points where appropriate, for example, deactivating pass readers at turnstiles in favour of showing a pass to security personnel at a distance.

4.2 Moving around buildings and stores

Objective: To maintain social distancing as far as possible while people travel through the workplace.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Reducing movement by discouraging non-essential trips within buildings and sites, for example restricting access to some areas, encouraging use of radios or telephones, where permitted. These items require cleaning between users if multi-use.

  2. Introducing more one-way flow through buildings. Providing floor markings, where appropriate, and signage should remind both workers and customers to follow to social distancing wherever possible.

  3. Reducing maximum occupancy for lifts, providing hand sanitiser for the operation of lifts and encouraging use of stairs wherever possible.

  4. Making sure that people with disabilities are able to access lifts while social distancing.

  5. Regulating use of high traffic areas including corridors, lifts, turnstiles and walkways to maintain social distancing and increasing the frequency of cleaning and disinfection of these areas.

4.3 Workplaces and workstations

Objective: To maintain appropriate social distancing between individuals when they are at their workstations.

For people who work in one place, workstations should be reconfigured to allow them to maintain social distancing wherever possible.

Workstations should be assigned to an individual as much as possible. If they need to be shared, they should be shared by the smallest possible number of people whilst maintaining social distancing.

If it is not possible to keep workstations at the recommended distance apart then businesses should consider whether that activity needs to continue for the business to operate, and if so take all mitigating actions possible to reduce the risk of transmission.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Reviewing layouts to allow workers to work further apart from each other.

  2. Using floor tape or paint to mark areas, where appropriate, to help people keep their distance or using signage or other communication measures taking into account building characteristics, trading style and customer profile. .

  3. Avoiding people working face-to-face. For example, by working side-by-side or facing away from each other.

  4. Using screens to create a physical barrier between people.

  5. Using a consistent pairing system if people have to work in close proximity. For example, cleaning hotel rooms or servicing equipment at an indoor attraction

  6. Minimising contacts around transactions, for example, considering using contactless payments, and encouraging online booking and pre-payment where appropriate.

  7. If using cash, encouraging increased handwashing and introducing more handwashing facilities for workers and customers or providing hand sanitiser where this is not practical.

  8. Rethinking demonstrations and promotions to minimise direct contact and to maintain social distancing.

4.4 Accidents, security and other incidents

Objective: To prioritise safety during incidents.

In an emergency, for example, an accident, provision of first aid, fire or break-in, people should not have to stay the recommended distance apart if it would be unsafe.

People involved in the provision of assistance to others should pay particular attention to sanitation measures immediately afterwards including washing hands.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Reviewing your incident and emergency procedures to ensure they reflect the social distancing principles as far as possible.

5. Cleaning the workplace

In this section

5.1 Before reopening

Objective: To make sure that any site or location that has been closed or partially operated is clean and ready to restart, including:

  • an assessment for all sites, or parts of sites, that have been closed, before restarting work
  • cleaning procedures and providing hand sanitiser, before restarting work

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Ensuring that ventilation systems are safe, including checking whether you need to service them or adjust them, for example, so that they do not automatically reduce ventilation levels due to lower than normal occupancy levels.

  2. Most air conditioning systems do not need adjustment, however where systems serve multiple buildings, or you are unsure, advice should be sought from your heating ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) engineers or advisers.

5.2 Keeping the workplace clean

Objective: To keep the workplace clean and prevent transmission by touching contaminated surfaces.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Frequent cleaning of work areas and equipment between uses, using your usual cleaning products.

  2. Frequent cleaning objects and surfaces that are touched regularly, including self-checkouts, trolleys, coffee machines, betting machines or staff handheld devices, and making sure there are adequate disposal arrangements for cleaning products.

  3. Clearing workspaces and removing waste and belongings from the work area at the end of a shift.

  4. Maintaining good ventilation in the work environment (for example, opening windows and doors frequently, where possible).

  5. If you are cleaning after a known or suspected case of COVID-19, refer to the specific guidance.

5.3 Hygiene: handwashing, sanitation facilities and toilets

Objective: To help everyone keep good hygiene through the working day.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Using signs and posters to build awareness of good handwashing technique, the need to increase handwashing frequency, avoid touching your face and to cough or sneeze into a tissue which is binned safely, or into your arm if a tissue is not available.

  2. Providing regular reminders and signage to maintain hygiene standards.

  3. Providing hand sanitiser in multiple locations in addition to hand-washing facilities.

  4. Setting clear use and cleaning guidance for showers and toilets to ensure they are cleaned very frequently and social distancing is achieved as much as possible.

  5. Enhancing cleaning for busy areas and common touch points.

  6. Special care should be taken for cleaning of portable toilets.

  7. Considering use of social distance marking for other common areas such as toilets, showers, lockers and changing rooms and in any other areas where queues typically form.

  8. Providing more waste facilities and more frequent rubbish collection. When disposing of face coverings and PPE, people should do so in a ‘black bag’ waste bin or litter bin. Face coverings or PPE should not be put in a recycling bin or dropped as litter. Businesses should provide extra bins for staff and customers to dispose of single-use face coverings and PPE, and should ensure that staff and customers do not use a recycling bin. Full details on how to dispose of your personal or business waste during the coronavirus pandemic can be found on GOV.UK.

  9. Providing hand drying facilities – either paper towels or electrical dryers.

  10. It is recommended that any ventilation or air conditioning system that normally runs with a recirculation mode should now be set up to run on full outside air where this is possible.

5.3.1 Toilets

Objective: To ensure that toilets are kept open and to ensure/promote good hygiene, social distancing, and cleanliness in toilet facilities

Public toilets, portable toilets and toilets inside premises should be kept open and carefully managed to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Using signs and posters to build awareness of good hand-washing technique, the need to increase hand-washing frequency and to avoid touching your face, and to cough or sneeze into a tissue which is binned safely, or into your arm if a tissue is not available.

  2. Consider the use of social distancing marking in areas where queues normally form, and the adoption of a limited entry approach, with one in, one out (whilst avoiding the creation of additional bottlenecks).

  3. To enable good hand hygiene consider making hand sanitiser available on entry to toilets where safe and practical, and ensure suitable hand-washing facilities including running water and liquid soap and suitable options for drying (either paper towels or hand driers) are available.

  4. Setting clear use and cleaning guidance for toilets, with increased frequency of cleaning in line with usage. Use normal cleaning products, paying attention to frequently hand touched surfaces, and consider use of disposable cloths or paper roll to clean all hard surfaces.

  5. Keep the facilities well ventilated, for example by fixing doors open where appropriate.

  6. Special care should be taken for cleaning of portable toilets and larger toilet blocks.

  7. Putting up a visible cleaning schedule can keep it up to date and visible.

  8. Providing more waste facilities and more frequent rubbish collection.

5.4 Handling goods, merchandise and other materials

Objective: To reduce transmission through contact with objects that come in the store.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Encouraging increased handwashing and introducing more handwashing facilities for workers and customers or providing hand sanitiser where this is not practical.

  2. Putting in place picking-up and dropping-off collection points where possible, rather than passing goods hand-to-hand.

  3. Cleaning exterior and interior touchpoints in accordance to sector guidance, for example, theme park rides and attractions. Also considering the introduction of hand sanitiser stations immediately before and after customer use.

  4. Keeping returns separate from displayed merchandise / stock to reduce the likelihood of transmission through touch.

6. Personal protective equipment (PPE) and face coverings

PPE protects the user against health or safety risks at work. It can include items such as safety helmets, gloves, eye protection, high-visibility clothing, safety footwear and safety harnesses. It also includes respiratory protective equipment, such as face masks.

Where you are already using PPE in your work activity to protect against non-COVID-19 risks, you should continue to do so.

At the start of this document we described the steps you should take to manage COVID-19 risk in the workplace. This includes working from home and staying at the recommended distance away from each other in the workplace if at all possible. When managing the risk of COVID-19, additional PPE beyond what you usually wear is not beneficial. This is because COVID-19 is a different type of risk to the risks you normally face in a workplace, and needs to be managed through social distancing, hygiene and fixed teams or partnering, not through the use of PPE.

The exception is clinical settings, like a hospital, or a small handful of other roles for which Public Health England advises use of PPE, for example, first responders and immigration enforcement officers. If you are in one of these groups you should refer to the advice at:

Workplaces should not encourage the precautionary use of extra PPE to protect against COVID-19 outside clinical settings or when responding to a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19.

Unless you are in a situation where the risk of COVID-19 transmission is very high, your risk assessment should reflect the fact that the role of PPE in providing additional protection is extremely limited. However, if your risk assessment does show that PPE is required, then you should provide this PPE free of charge to workers who need it. Any PPE provided should fit properly. Please be mindful that the wearing of a face covering may inhibit communication with people who rely on lip reading, facial expressions and clear sound.

You must wear a face covering by law in some public places unless you have a reasonable excuse for not wearing one or you are not able to wear one, for example, because of your age or a health condition.

You are also strongly encouraged to wear a face covering in other enclosed public spaces where social distancing may be difficult and where you come into contact with people you do not normally meet.

7. Workforce management

In this section

7.1 Shift patterns and working groups

Objective: To change the way work is organised to create distinct groups and reduce the number of contacts each worker has.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. As far as possible, where workers are split into teams or shift groups, fixing these teams or shift groups so that where contact is unavoidable, this happens between the same people.

  2. Identifying areas where people have to directly pass things to each other and find ways to remove direct contact such as by using drop-off points or transfer zones.

  3. You should assist the Test and Trace service by keeping a temporary record of your staff shift patterns for 21 days and assist NHS Test and Trace with requests for that data if needed. This could help contain clusters or outbreaks.

7.2 Work-related travel

7.2.1 Cars, accommodation and visits

Objective: To avoid unnecessary work travel and keep people safe when they do need to travel between locations.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Walk and cycle if you can. Where this is not possible, use public transport or drive. If using public transport is necessary, wearing a face covering is mandatory, unless you are exempt for health, disability or other reasons.

  2. Minimising the number of people outside of your household or support bubble travelling together in any one vehicle, using fixed travel partners (e.g. always travelling with the same people), increasing ventilation when possible and avoiding sitting face-to-face.

  3. Cleaning shared vehicles between shifts or on handover.

  4. Where workers are required to stay away from their home, centrally logging the stay and confirming that any overnight accommodation meets social distancing guidelines.

7.2.2 Deliveries to other sites

Objective: To help workers delivering to other sites such as factories, logistics sites or customers’ premises to maintain social distancing and hygiene practices.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Putting in place procedures to minimise person-to-person contact during deliveries to other sites.

  2. Maintaining consistent pairing where two-person deliveries are required.

  3. Minimising contact during payments and exchange of documentation, for example by using electronic payment methods and electronically signed and exchanged documents.

7.3 Communications and training

7.3.1 Returning to work

Objective: To make sure all workers understand COVID-19 related safety procedures.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Providing clear, consistent and regular communication to improve understanding and consistency of ways of working.

  2. Engaging with worker and worker representatives through existing communication routes and worker representatives to explain and agree any changes in working arrangements.

  3. Developing communication and training materials for workers prior to returning to site, especially around new procedures for arrival at work.

7.3.2 Ongoing communications and signage

Objective: To make sure all workers are kept up to date with how safety measures are being implemented or updated.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Ongoing engagement with workers (including through trade unions or employee representative groups) to monitor and understand any unforeseen impacts of changes to working environments.

  2. Awareness and focus on the importance of mental health at times of uncertainty. The government has published guidance on the mental health and wellbeing aspects of coronavirus (COVID-19).

  3. Using simple, clear messaging to explain guidelines using images and clear language, with consideration of groups for which English may not be their first language and those with protected characteristics such as visual impairments

  4. Using visual communications, for example whiteboards or signage, to explain changes to production schedules, breakdowns or materials shortages to reduce the need for face-to-face communications.

  5. Communicating approaches and operational procedures to suppliers, customers or trade bodies to help their adoption and to share experience.

8. Inbound and outbound goods

Objective: To maintain social distancing and avoid surface transmission when goods enter and leave the site, especially in high volume situations, for example, distribution centres or despatch areas.

Steps that will usually be needed:

  1. Revising pick-up and drop-off collection points, procedures, signage and markings.

  2. Minimising unnecessary contact at gatehouse security, yard and warehouse. For example, non-contact deliveries where the nature of the product allows for use of electronic pre-booking.

  3. Considering methods to reduce frequency of deliveries, for example, by ordering larger quantities less often.

  4. Where possible and safe, having single workers load or unload vehicles.

  5. Where possible, using the same pairs of people for loads where more than one is needed.

  6. Enabling drivers to access welfare facilities when required, consistent with other guidance.

  7. Encouraging drivers to stay in their vehicles where this does not compromise their safety and existing safe working practice.

This document has been prepared by the Department for Culture Media & Sport (DCMS) with input from members of the Visitor Economy Working Group; UKHospitality; VisitBritain; UKInbound; Association of Leading Visitor Attractions; Association of Event Organisers; the Meetings Industry Association, the Events Industry Board; Country Land and Business Association; trades unions and the devolved administrations in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, and in consultation with Public Health England (PHE) and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

Where to obtain further guidance

Hotels and other guest accommodation

Indoor and Outdoor attractions

Business Events

General guidance

Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) advice:

National Counter Terrorism Security Office advice

Appendix

Definitions

Term Definition
Common areas Refers to areas and amenities which are provided for the common use of more than one person including canteens, reception areas, meeting rooms, areas of worship, toilets, gardens, fire escapes, kitchens, fitness facilities, store rooms, laundry facilities.
Clinically extremely vulnerable people Refers to people who have specific underlying health conditions that make them extremely vulnerable to severe illness if they contract COVID-19. Clinically extremely vulnerable people will have received a letter telling them they are in this group, or will have been told by their GP. Who is ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’?
Clinically vulnerable people Refers to people who may be at increased risk from COVID-19, including those aged 70 or over and those with some underlying health conditions. Who is ‘clinically vulnerable’?