Tuesday, January 05, 2021

Lockdown 3.

 It was always going to happen. This up and down roller coaster of COVID hasn't gone away, yet the way some people act, it would seem it had.

Within an hour of Boris's speech last night Twitter was awash with comments from birders making caveats to continue what they do, unabated. That's the problem with the Government rules, they are open to much ambiguous interpretation.  

I am waiting to see what new definition the words 'stay local for exercise' will get from the birding community?  

Writing this, above, looks as if I am having a 'holier than thou' approach, but genuinely I'm not. What would I do if someone turned up a mega county bird 30 miles along the coast? I'm sure I would be rolling out my own justifications too, but I certainly wont be getting into the car and driving out for a year tick.

For me, lockdown isn't as bad as it is for some. I don't tend to venture very far or very often either so this period will be little different.

But, just so I can interpret these to suit myself here are the 5th January Government Rules - 

Exercising and meeting other people

You should minimise time spent outside your home. 

It is against the law to meet socially with family or friends unless they are part of your household or support bubble. You can only leave your home to exercise, and not for the purpose of recreation or leisure (e.g. a picnic or a social meeting). This should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area.

[Note - So many definitions available in this one sentence] 

You can exercise in a public outdoor place:

  • by yourself
  • with the people you live with
  • with your support bubble (if you are legally permitted to form one)
  • in a childcare bubble where providing childcare
  • or, when on your own, with 1 person from another household

Public outdoor places include:

  • parks, beaches, countryside accessible to the public, forests
  • public gardens (whether or not you pay to enter them)
  • the grounds of a heritage site
  • playgrounds

Outdoor sports venues, including tennis courts, golf courses and swimming pools, must close.

When around other people, stay 2 metres apart from anyone not in your household - meaning the people you live with - or your support bubble. Where this is not possible, stay 1 metre apart with extra precautions (e.g. wearing a face covering).

You must wear a face covering in many indoor settings, such as shops or places of worship where these remain open, and on public transport, unless you are exempt. This is the law. 


You must not leave your home unless you have a reasonable excuse (for example, for work or education purposes). If you need to travel you should stay local – meaning avoiding travelling outside of your village, town or the part of a city where you live – and look to reduce the number of journeys you make overall. The list of reasons you can leave your home and area include, but are not limited to:

  • work, where you cannot reasonably work from home
  • accessing education and for caring responsibilities
  • visiting those in your support bubble – or your childcare bubble for childcare
  • visiting hospital, GP and other medical appointments or visits where you have had an accident or are concerned about your health
  • buying goods or services that you need, but this should be within your local area wherever possible
  • outdoor exercise. This should be done locally wherever possible, but you can travel a short distance within your area to do so if necessary (for example, to access an open space)
  • attending the care and exercise of an animal, or veterinary services

If you need to travel, walk or cycle where possible, and plan ahead and avoid busy times and routes on public transport. This will allow you to practice social distancing while you travel.

Avoid car sharing with anyone from outside your household or your support bubble.

So now we know. 

What ever version you take on board, try to think of the bigger picture. 

Stay safe everyone, see you at the Little Bustard, but that will be ok for me because...

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