COVID-19: Official health information and guidance

From 8 March, restrictions in England started to be lifted. From 29 March the 'Stay at Home' rule ended, but many restrictions are still in place and people are advised to 'Stay Local'.

Symptoms and stay at home advice

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 Wandsworth 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. Read guidance on wearing a mask and apply for a mask exempt badge. Failure to do so could result in a £200 fine.
  • 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.
    • 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

Local COVID Alert Level

From 29 March the 'Stay at Home' rule ended. However, many restrictions remain in place. The current changes (from 12 April) include:

Social contact

The evidence shows that it is safer for people to meet outdoors rather than indoors. And this is why from 29 March, when most schools start to break up for the Easter holidays, outdoor gatherings (including in private gardens) of either six people (the Rule of 6) or two households are now allowed, making it easier for friends and families to meet outside.

Business and activities

From 12 April, all non-essential retail, personal care, libraries and community centres, most outdoor attractions, indoor leisure including gyms and outdoor hospitality will reopen.


Travel abroad will continue to be prohibited, other than for a small number of permitted reasons. Holidays abroad will not be allowed.

See the full guidance.

Other guidance

These documents provide more detailed advice on the new government guidance:

In addition to UK measures there is guidance on shielding and protecting people defined on medical grounds as extremely vulnerable from COVID-19. The guidance is for people, including children, who are at very high risk of severe illness from COVID-19 because of a serious underlying health condition.

More information on coronavirus testing and Local Outbreak Plan.

Latest government information

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

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