Covid-19 update: Colchester to move into Tier 4


Colchester moves into Tier 4 Covid-19 restrictions from 00:01 on 26 December 2020

The Government has today announced that Colchester is to be placed under Tier 4 restrictions from Boxing Day (26 December 2020).  


This is because, sadly, current rates of infection are rising quickly across Colchester and case rates are now around 250 in 100,000 population, with the prediction that this will increase further.  


The key new restrictions that we face being in Tier 4 ‘Stay At Home’ are: 

  • No socialising with anyone outside your household or support bubble in any indoor setting.  
  • No socialising with anyone outside your household or support bubble in any outdoor setting. You can meet one other person in a public outdoor setting if you maintain social distancing and follow the guidance on meeting others safely. You cannot meet in a private garden. 
  • You can continue to do unlimited exercise outdoors alone, or with your household or support bubble. You can visit parks, countryside accessible to the public, public gardens or outdoor sports facilities. 
  • You should avoid travelling outside your local area, except in exceptional circumstances. 
  • You should work from home if possible. Where you cannot do so, you can continue to travel to the workplace. 
  • Non-essential retail businesses, accommodation providers, indoor leisure and sports facilities, entertainment venues, indoor attractions, personal care facilities and community halls must close. 
  • Hospitality venues, such as pubs, bars, cafes and restaurants must close except for takeaway (until 11pm), delivery, drive-through and click and collect services.  
  • Essential businesses, such as food shops, market stalls selling essential goods, banks, vets and medical services can stay open, in a Covid-Secure manner. 

For a complete list of all Tier 4 restrictions, please visit, where you can also view restrictions and exemptions in all tiers. 


There is separate guidance for households with a possible or confirmed coronavirus infection. There is also separate guidance for support and childcare bubbles, which apply across all tiers.  


The Government has said that they plan on reviewing the tiers on a fortnightly basis. 

Christmas Restrictions 
Information about Christmas restrictions, which will apply on Christmas Day only are available on the GOV.UK website. 

Support for residents

You can find advice and support on accessing food, information on key community contacts, support for Clinically Extremely vulnerable people, and mental health support services in the Support for Communities section of our website.  You can also view our Community Response Pack for information on voluntary and support groups across Colchester. 

Residents who have a loss in income due to being asked by Test and Trace to self-isolate could be eligible for a Test and Trace Support Payment of £500. More information including eligibility and how to apply can be found on our Test and Trace Support Payment section of our website.

Support for businesses
We encourage all businesses to visit our Business Support section our website for advice, and to apply for Business Grant Support  We will let businesses who apply for a grant know if additional support becomes available in the future.

The Government Business Support website contains additional useful information and contains a handy tool which allows businesses to check the support available to them to them. 

Steps we are taking to ensure Colchester remains Covid safe 

  • Our Licensing Team continue to make regular checks on businesses that remain open across the borough, including essential businesses like supermarkets. 
  • Our Covid Marshals and Neighbourhood Services teams are working in partnership with the Police, Our Colchester, town centre security teams to ensure our businesses are Covid safe and closed venues are protected.

Impact on Council Services

We will be required to close the following services from 26 December as a result of Government requirements associated with Colchester being placed in Tier 4:  

  • All Museums including Colchester Castle  
  • The Visitor Colchester Information Centre  
  • All Sport and Leisure Facilities including all Leisure World sites 
  • High Woods Country Park Visitor Centre (the park will remain open) 


Staff will be redeployed from these services to perform alternative duties including supporting other Critical Services. There are no other impacts on Critical Services as a result of moving into Tier 4
 and we reassure residents that our recycling and rubbish collections will still take place as usual (except textile recycling, which remains suspended).



Follow key Government advice


We urge everyone in Colchester to remain vigilant and follow the key advice from the Government: 

  • Regularly wash your hands 
  • Cover your face when in public indoor spaces or where in close proximity to others 
  • Maintain a social distance of 2 metres where possible 
  • Isolate if asked to 
  • Get tested if you have any of the common symptoms: a high fever, new or continuous dry cough, loss of taste or smell. 


Keep up to date



Please continue to check our dedicated webpage at and our social media channels to keep informed of the latest news on the council’s work to help prevent the spread of Covid-19 and any changes to our services.



Stay Alert | Control the Virus | Save Lives