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Everyone who qualifies for a face mask exemption card as supermarkets ban maskless shoppers

More and more shops are cracking down on customers without masks

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Nickolay Romensky / Flickr & Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Lanyard Scheme/Facebook

You can now get a government medical exemption card from wearing a face mask, if you qualify.

Supermarkets are cracking down on those not following the face mask rules, and only allowing people without masks into stores if they have a medical exemption card.

Asda, Aldi, Morrisons, Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Waitrose have all said they will be strictly enforcing face mask rules from now on.

Face coverings must be worn on public transport, in shops, supermarkets, banks, post offices, places of worship, museums, galleries, entertainment venues and libraries in England. 

Those who refuse to wear one can be fined £200 in England and £60 in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales by the police.

Nickolay Romensky / Flickr

The guidance states that you do not have to wear a face mask if you have ‘a physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability’, and that you would experience ‘severe distress’ from wearing one. 

The list of people who are exempt from wearing a mask includes:

  • Children (under 11 in England or Wales, under 13 in Northern Ireland, under five in Scotland)
  • If you’re travelling with someone who requires lip-reading, or assisting someone who relies on lip reading to communicate
  • Those unable to put on or wear a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or disability
  • People for whom wearing or removing a face covering will cause severe distress
  • To eat, drink or take medication
Nickolay Romensky / Flickr

You can now apply for a face mask exemption card if you are worried about being stopped. 

The government has said that those who cannot wear a mask will not have to provide written evidence as to why, and supermarkets and shops have been urged to be mindful to particular circumstances.

However, all the major supermarkets have now confirmed that they will refuse entry to those refusing to wear a mask without medical exemption.

You can also opt for the charity Hidden Disabilities’ face mask exemption card which indicates that you have a hidden disability, illness or impairment. These will cost you 55p and do come with a warning that shops and public transport can still refuse entry if you are not wearing a face mask. Find our more here

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Drivers could soon be fined for parking on the pavement under new rules

Make sure you’re aware of the proposed rule changes

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Jaggery / Geograph

A ban on parking on the pavement could soon be implemented across England, under new laws which are expected to be rolled out this year.

Parking on pavements would be a thing of the past, with £70 penalty fines for offenders coming into effect under the proposed new rules.

According to reports, the new legislation would see a ban on antisocial parking introduced, in a bid to make pavements safer for people with disabilities and visual impairments, as well as families.

The changes to the law which are being considered have already been implemented in London and would be rolled out nationwide.



They come in response to complaints about pavement parking and the risks it brings with it to those whose use pavements, with the Department for Transport (DfT) initially launching a proposal on the subject in September 2020.

The proposals came after a review discovered that almost half of wheelchair users and a third of visually impaired people were less willing to go out on the streets alone due to ‘antisocial’ parking on the pavement.

A spokeswoman from the DfT explained to The Mirror that the government is currently collating responses after receiving ‘overwhelming’ feedback.

The public consultation period for the proposals ended back on November 22nd, and as such a decision on the plan is expected imminently.

Jaggery / Geograph

However, Mark Tongue, director of Select Car Leasing has said that ‘the guidelines are currently quite confusing for motorists’.

The motoring company conducted a report which discovered that local authorities would have the power to dish out £70 fines if a vehicle was considered an obstruction, even if it was parked outside the driver’s house.

Mr Tongue said: “A pavement parking ban is 100% needed nationwide – anything that puts pedestrians at an increased risk requires action.

“However, the information given so far is slightly confusing for drivers. At the moment, there’s no clear guidelines for those who park on the pavement due to having no room on their own drive. Most households have more than one car, so it will be interesting to see where motorists are expected to park if not on the pavement outside their homes.

“Clear guidance is required for drivers so they know the correct location to park in order to avoid a fine.”

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Operation Forth Bridge: the full plan for what happens next after Prince Philip’s death

Buckingham Palace confirmed the sad news of his passing earlier today

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Michael Garnett / Flickr

Buckingham Palace announced this afternoon that HRH Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh has died.

The 99-year-old, who would have celebrated his 100th birthday in June, passed away peacefully at Windsor Castle this morning, Friday April 9th.

Buckingham Palace said: “It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen has announced the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

“His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle.

“Further announcements will be made in due course. The Royal Family join with people around the world in mourning his loss.”

There were already strict procedures put in place for when Prince Philip died, which have now begun, and they’re known as Operation Forth Bridge.

According to the plan there are several steps that need to be followed, including everything from national mourning to a burial site for the Duke.

Operation Forth Bridge has been around for many years, with Buckingham Palace, in consultation with both the Queen and Prince Philip, regularly updating and reviewing it.

Part one of the operation was the announcement from Buckingham Palace confirming the death of the Duke, which was distributed to the Press Association and BBC first.

Then the country enters a period of national mourning, meaning a set of rules, like flags being flown at half-mast, must be followed.

According to reports, it’s thought newsreaders and other TV presenters must wear black out of respect.

Jamie McCaffrey / Flickr

Next, plans for the funeral will be drawn up, and while Prince Philip is entitled to a state funeral he reportedly wanted something more discreet – a private service in the style of a military funeral at St George’s Chapel in Windsor, followed by burial at Frogmore Gardens.

The funeral is still expected to be televised despite the current restrictions, although it remains unclear how many people will be able to attend it.

The Queen’s private secretary and senior adviser, Sir Edward Young, will be on hand to help her during the undoubtedly challenging days ahead.

As well as being responsible for supporting the Queen in her duties, Sir Edward is also the channel of communication between the Queen and the government.

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Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh, has died aged 99

NEWS JUST IN

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Jamie McCaffrey / Flickr

Prince Philip has died aged 99, Buckingham Palace has confirmed today.

A tweet on The Royal Family Twitter account announced the news.

The Duke of Edinburgh was born 1921, and was married to Queen Elizabeth II for more than 70 years – officially the longest-serving consort in British history.

The official announcement read: “It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen announces the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

“His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle.

“Further announcements will be made in due course.

“The Royal Family join with people around the world in mourning his loss.”

There’s been no official details about the Duke’s funeral released yet, however it has been reported that he will be given a royal ceremonial funeral rather than a state funeral, in line with his wishes.

 

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