Covid infections are now serious enough that Oxford will move into Tier 2.

It follows calls by the county's director of public health last week to move Oxfordshire into Tier 2.

This was blocked, however, and after fresh talks it is just the city which will move up from Tier 1 and face extra restrictions from Saturday.

What is Tier 2?

Also called 'high' alert, it is the second level of the new three-tiered local lockdown system aimed at containing the spread of Covid-19.

ALSO READ: Reasons why Oxford was originally placed in Tier 1 

On top of national restrictions like the Rule of Six and a 10pm curfew for pubs and restaurants additional measures include;

  • A ban on houeholds mixing indoors, including private homes, as well as in pubs and restaurants.
  • An exception is made for households joined as part of a support bubble - this is where a household with one adult joins with another household.
  • Households in that support bubble can still visit each other, stay overnight, and visit public places together.

What about school, university and work?

Office workers who can work from home should do so, though key public sector employees should continue to go into their workplaces.


This also applies to anyone else who cannot work from home, such as factory workers.

Schools, colleges and universities are all able to stay open.

Oxford Mail:

Anything else?

  • People are encouraged to 'reduce the number of journeys you make where possible'.
  • Visits to care homes should also only be made under 'exceptional circumstances'.
  • You can still attend places of worship for a service, however, you must not mingle with anyone outside of your household or support bubble.


  • Weddings and funerals can also still take place under the national limits on attendees. 
  • Organised outdoor sport can continue with organised indoor sport, exercise classes and other activity groups are only permitted indoors if is it possible for people to avoid mixing with people they do not live with.

Is there financial support?

Chancellor Rishi Sunak, under pressure to provide more help to businesses impacted by Tier 2 restrictions, set out new financial aid last week in the House of Commons.

Previously areas in Tier 2 did not benefit from the same help as those in Tier 3, including business grants and higher wage subsidies, because they could remain open.

Mr Sunak said this would be changed, with a new direct cash grant scheme available via local authorities - it is worth up to £2,100 for every month of restrictions and is the equivalent of 70 per cent of the support for Tier 3 areas.

The Job Support Scheme – the plan designed to replace the furlough system from November 1 – has also been made more generous across the country.

Instead of only being open to people in 'viable' jobs working a third of their normal hours, it now covers employees doing just 20 per cent of their usual work.

The amount that employers are required to pay to top up their wages has also been reduced to just five per cent of unworked hours, down from 33 per cent.

Extra help for the self-employed also has the amount covered by grants increase from 20 per cent of profits to 40 per cent, meaning the maximum payout will increase from £1,875 to £3,750.