COVID-19: Official health information and guidance

From 12.01am on 6 January, the UK is in national lockdown - this means that you must not leave your home unless necessary.

Symptoms of COVID-19

The most common symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are recent onset of:

  • New continuous cough
  • High temperature
  • Loss of, or change in, normal sense of taste or smell

For most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild illness, but however mild your symptoms, you should stay at home.

Visit the NHS coronavirus webpage for the latest advice and guidance.

Read Government information and advice in other languages and accessible formats.

Testing is available in Richmond upon Thames for those people displaying symptoms and those who are asymptomatic.

How to stay well

The Government regularly updates national guidance to prevent the spread of coronavirus. However, residents are reminded:

  • Hands: Wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds.
  • Face: Wear a mask on public transport and if you are going into a shop. Failure to do so could result in a £200 fine. Apply for one of our exempt badges if you do not have to wear a mask
  • Space: Keep your distance if you go out (1 metre apart if 2 metres is not possible).

You  must remember:

  • Self-isolate if you or anyone in your household has symptoms. See guide for how to isolate at home safely (pdf, 566 KB).
    • A new Test and Trace Support payment is available for people on a low income who must self-isolate for 10 days and cannot work from home during this period. 
  • Apply for a test if you have symptoms or have specifically been told to by a healthcare professional
  • If you test positive for coronavirus – provide details of contacts via NHS Test and Trace.

Download the NHS COVID-19 App

Local COVID Alert Level

From 12.01am on 6 January, the UK will be in national lockdown - this means that you must not leave or be outside your home except where necessary. You may only leave home to:

  • Shop for basic necessities, for you or a vulnerable person
  • Go to work, or provide voluntary or charitable services, if you cannot reasonably do so from home
  • Exercise with your household (or support bubble) or one other person -  this should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area.
  • Meet your support bubble or childcare bubble where necessary, but only if you are legally permitted to form one
  • Seek medical assistance or avoid injury, illness or risk of harm (including domestic abuse)
  • Attend education or childcare - for those eligible

Colleges, primary and secondary schools will remain open only for vulnerable children and the children of critical workers. All other children will learn remotely until February half term. Early Years settings remain open.

Higher Education provision will remain online until mid-February for all except future critical worker courses.

If you do leave home for a permitted reason, you should always stay within the borough. You may leave your local area for a legally permitted reason, such as for work.

If you are clinically extremely vulnerable you should only go out for medical appointments, exercise or if it is essential. You should not attend work.

See the full guidance.

Latest Government information

You can find the latest information on the situation in the UK on the GOV.UK website.

For information on symptoms, how to protect yourself, and what to do if you think you might have coronavirus, visit the NHS coronavirus webpage.

Updated: 05 January 2021