Local lockdown in Wales

Posted by Elfyn Jones on 14/10/2020
The new local lockdown rules will affect residents as well as incoming climbers and walkers in many areas of Wales.

As Covid infection rates rise, the Welsh Government has introduced local lockdowns in parts of Wales. The Welsh lockdowns are more stringent than in England with legally enforceable travel restrictions on residents and visitors. Updated: October 14th.

Breaking news October 14th! In addition to the information below, the Welsh Government have just announced that all travel to Wales, from Tier 2 and Tier 3 Areas  (or similar high infection rate areas) in England, Northen Ireland and Scotland will be banned form 6pm on Friday October 16th. More details will be added when available. Welsh Government have issued a press statement. and updated guidance which is copied below.

Are there travel restrictions in place for people coming in to Wales?

As of 6pm on Friday 16 October, people who live in areas of high coronavirus infection rates across the UK are not allowed to travel to Wales unless it is for work, education or other essential purpose (a reasonable excuse). The areas this applies to are:

  • Tier 2 areas in England
  • Tier 3 areas in England
  • The Central belt of Scotland
  • All of Northern Ireland

Travel to those areas of Wales with local restrictions is already prohibited (and this applies to all, whether living in Wales or not).

Do the new travel restrictions also prevent me travelling from Wales into any of these areas?

Yes – the restrictions work both ways. So, for example, travel between Pembrokeshire and Merseyside is not allowed in either direction without a reasonable excuse.

Many counties and local borough areas of South Wales have been under local lockdown since mid-September, but now four more counties in North Wales have been added to the list by the Welsh Government, coming into effect 6pm Thursday 1st October.

The Welsh Government makes the decision primarily based on the rate of infection per 100,000 over a seven day rolling period in each local authority area, as well as looking at Covid hospital admissions and the rate of change of infections in each area.

What does local lockdown mean in Wales? 

  • People will not be allowed to enter or leave any of the lockdown areas listed below without a reasonable excuse, such as travel for work, medical requirements or education.
  • People will only be able to meet people they don’t live with outdoors for the time being. They will not be able to form, or be in, extended households.
  • If you live in an area not subject to lockdown, you are permitted to travel through, but not stop in a lock down area to reach your destination if it's in a non-lockdown county. 
  • You can still meet up outdoors for excercise or sports in groups up to 30, but all of those people have to be living in the same lockdown area.
  • You cannot visit any lockdown area for recreation, holiday or stay overnight in these areas if you do not live there.
  • You cannot travel to any of these areas to stay overnight in any accomodation including, in your holiday home, B&B, hotel, club hut, bunkhouse, caravan or campsite. 
  • There are no restrictions on the type of sports or exercise that can be carried out by residents of these areas and there are no closures of any parts of the countryside for residents of these areas. 

The restrictions will be in addition to the rules that apply everywhere in Wales, including:

  • All licensed premises must stop selling alcohol at 10pm
  • Everyone over 11 will be required to wear face coverings in indoor public areas – as is the case across Wales.

Which areas are in lockdown?

South Wales:

People cannot travel to or from the following areas:-

Blaenau Gwent, Bridgend, Caerphilly, Cardiff, Merthyr, Neath Port Talbot, Newport, Rhondda Cynon Taff, Torfaen, Swansea and the Vale of Glamorgan. The town of Llanelli is also under a lockdown. 

This area includes parts of the southern areas of the Brecon Beacons, including parts of the Waterfall Country and climbing areas such as Dinas Rock. Gower is also within the Swansea lockdown area.

North Wales:

People cannot travel to or from the following areas:-

Conwy, Denbighshire, Flintshire and Wrexham. In addtion, the city of Bangor is also now under local lockdown. 

These areas include significant parts of the Snowdonia National Park, including much of the Ogwen Valley, the Carneddau mountains, most of the Glyderau and Tryfan and Moel Siabod. The Eglwyseg Valley (Clwyd Limestone), The Ormes and most of the A55 crags also fall within lockdown areas.

Again there are no specific closures of honeypot areas or areas of countryside but these are now only accessible to residents of that county. 

At the time of writing, there are no lockdowns in force for the counties of Anglesey, Carmarthenshire (except for the town of Llanelli), Ceredigion, Gwynedd (except for the city of Bangor), Monmouthshire, Pembrokeshire and Powys and there are no closures of any honeypot or countryside areas.

If you live in a non-lockdown area, travel to and overnight stays in these non-lockdown areas is currently permitted but you cannot stop in any lockdown areas while travelling to your destination. 

Snowdonia National Park Auhtority have produced a map showing the boundaries of the lockdown area within its area. 

The situation is very fluid and changes daily and it's worth checking the Welsh Government site for the most up to date information. 


More FAQs about the BMC and Covid-19

🌳 Can I start climbing / hillwalking? Yes, but be cautious in your actions, respectful of local communities and vigilant in avoiding transmitting the virus. Read our latest advice for July here and for the general return to climbing here

🌳 What's the situation in Wales? Read the full October update here

😷 When and how will the walls reopen?  In England it's July 25th Read the ABC's advice for walls and watch their live update here

✈️ Can I now travel abroad again? Get the latest answers to going abroad with travel restrictions now easing

🛒 Is the BMC shop open? Yes - we officially reopened at the start of July!

🏡 Do you have any advice for clubs and huts? The latest club huts update and all you need to know

📜 Will the BMC keep running smoothly? Read more or watch our weekly live updates from our CEO

🚗 What have the BMC access team been doing during this time? Read on

As the climbing walls, crags and mountains start to open, we wanted to say thanks to every BMC member who supported us through the Coronavirus crisis.

From weekly Facebook Lives and GB Climbing home training videos, to our access team working to re-open the crags and fight for your mountain access, we couldn’t have made it without you.

If you liked what we did, then tell your friends about us: www.thebmc.co.uk/join


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