England to go into lockdown, following string of new measures in Europe

UK prime minister Boris Johnson has imposed a lockdown on England from this Thursday, November 5, for a four-week period. The lockdown will see all non-essential retail close.

The news comes after a string of European countries introduced new lockdown measures:

  • France: Lockdown introduced on October 30 until December 1. All non-essential retail closed. French president Emmanuel Macron said the case for re-opening non-essential retail would be reviewed in two weeks time. On November 1 the government said that retail that remains open would be prohibited from selling non-essential goods from Tuesday, November 3.


  • Italy: the country is expected to go into a second national lockdown this week. On October 26, Italian president Giuseppe Conte imposed a curfew that saw the closing of bars and restaurants at 6pm and the complete closure of gyms, swimming pools, cinemas and theaters.


  • Spain: A national state of emergency was introduced on October 25 until May 9, 2021. The move allows Spain’s regional governments to impose overnight curfews and  implement full or partial lockdowns.


  • The Netherlands: Lockdown introduced on October 14 until November 11. The lockdown is described as a partial lockdown. All stores are allowed to remain open, with hygiene measures and social distancing enforced, but must close by 8pm (except for supermarkets).


  • Belgium: Lockdown introduced on November 2 until December 14. Non-essential businesses must close.


  • Germany: Lockdown introduced on November 2 until November 30. Shops, including hairdressers, are allowed to remain open, but German chancellor Angela Merkel urged people to limit unnecessary trips.


  • Ireland: Lockdown was introduced on October 22 until December 3. Non-essential retail is forced to close.


  • Portugal: Lockdown introduced on November 4 until November 18 in most of the country (cases to be reviewed every 15 days). Shops are allowed to remain open, but people are urged to stay indoors.


  • Poland: Lockdown introduced on October 24, according to Polish media RMF24. Shops can remain open with hygiene and social distancing protocols.


  • Austria: Lockdown imposed on November 3 until November 30. Non-essential stores and hairdressers may stay open, but people are encouraged to stay indoors between 8pm and 6am.


  • Czech Republic: Lockdown imposed on October 22 until November 3. All non-essential retail forced to close.


  • Switzerland: New measures imposed on October 29 for an indefinite period, including closures of restaurants and bars at 11pm, higher-education moved  online and limitations on groups of people. Shops are allowed to remain open with mandatory masks. The Geneva canton, however, will go into lockdown today, November 2, until November 29. Bars, restaurants and non-essential shops will be closed, while schools will remain open.