Face coverings to be compulsory in all shops from 24 July

The Government are asking that people wearing face coverings while in shops, with the new guideline being made compulsory from 24 July.

Face coverings must be worn in all shops and supermarkets in England from 24 July, Boris Johnson has announced.

The rules will be the same as those currently in use on public transport, which means children under 11 and people with certain conditions will be exempt.

Since mid-May, the public has been advised to wear face coverings in enclosed public spaces, but it had not been mandatory.

The UK joins the list of around 120 countries now requiring face coverings to be worn in public places.

Enforcement will be carried out by police – not retail staff – and anyone who refuses to wear a face covering while shopping could be subject to a fine of up to £100, or £50 if paid within 14 days.

Announcing the new guidelines, a 10 Downing Street spokesperson said: “There is growing evidence that wearing a face covering in an enclosed space helps protect individuals and those around them from coronavirus.

“The prime minister has been clear that people should be wearing face coverings in shops and we will make this mandatory from July 24.”

The decision will be outlined on Tuesday afternoon by Health Secretary Matt Hancock in the House of Commons.

The change in advice aims to minimise the spread of coronavirus while also encouraging people to return to the shops safely.