Government advice and updates, including the devolved nations, and overseas, e.g. ROI:
National lockdown: Stay at Home (England only)
Following the Prime Minister’s announcement of a new national lockdown on 4 January 2021, find a link to the relevant guidance that has been issued by the government here.
Page 2 of the guidance confirms that where in-person attendance is required, and lists construction as one of those work areas, those areas can continue to operate.
Page 22 confirms that builders' merchants can continue to operate and remain open.
How to protect yourself and others
NHS COVID-19 app
Staying alert and safe (social distancing) guidance
Face coverings: when to wear one and how to make your own
Guidance on getting tested for Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Guidance for the public on mental health and wellbeing
How everyone can help stop coronavirus spreading (social distancing)
Staying safe outside your home guidance
Staying at home if you think you have coronavirus (self-isolating)
How to protect extremely vulnerable people (shielding)
UK Government information service on WhatsApp
Take Five to Stop Fraud
Employment and financial support
Guidance for employees
Job Support Scheme
Self-employment Income Support Scheme
Check Employment Status for Tax
Statutory Sick Pay (SSP)
Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
Your rights if your hours are cut or you're laid off
What to do if you cannot pay your tax bill on time
Self-isolating after returning to the UK: your employment rights
Employers, businesses and other organisations
Coronavirus Business Support Hub
The Recovery Advice for Business scheme
Help and support if your business is affected by coronavirus
Financial support for businesses
Check if you can claim for your employees' wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
Check what you need to do about Statutory Sick Pay (SSP)
NHS test and trace: workplace guidance (for England)
How to keep your employees safe
Social distancing in the workplace
Health and Safety Executive (HSE) page on Coronavirus
Applying for more time to file your company’s accounts
Local Growth Hub advice and support for Business
Apply for the coronavirus Local Authority Discretionary Grants Fund
Self-isolating after returning to the UK: Guidance for Employers
Information for those residing in the devolved nations regarding COVID-19 and/or construction
NIDirect provides details of support available for Northern Ireland businesses and employers.
Information, advice and guidance for businesses and employers in Northern Ireland from nibusinessinfo.co.uk.
Information for benefits and assistance during Covid-19.
Extra financial support information from NIDirect.
The Labour Relations Agency has also published Coronavirus guidance and links to resources for employers and employees.
You can find medical/health advice from the Department of Health at the link here.
Eddie Weir PCIAT has written on planning permission delays in NI - see the latter half of this article. (Please note this does not constitute as official advice.)
Contact tracing information from NIDirect.
FindBusinessSupport.gov.scot provides a range of resources for businesses in Scotland including:
Redundancy help in Scotland from Skills Development Scotland & PACE
A free service to help with current recruitment needs from Skills Development Scotland.
The Scottish government has now announced that updated guidance has been published for the construction sector in Scotland as of 15 July 2020. This means that Phase 4 of the industry’s restart plan in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic can begin. The industry-agreed six-step phased model for the return of the construction sector is as follows:
Phase 0: Planning
Phase 1: Covid-19 pre-start site prep
Phase 2: 'Soft start' to site works (only where physical distancing can be maintained)
Phase 3: Steady state operation (only where physical distancing can be maintained)
Phase 4: Steady state operation (where physical distancing can be maintained and/or with PPE use)
Phase 5: Increasing density/productivity with experience
Construction Industry Coronavirus (CICV) Forum is a collective of trade and professional bodies gathering intelligence, sharing advice and speaking directly with government on issues affecting members in the current crisis.
The CICV Forum has developed more detailed guidance on health and safety and this can be viewed here.
It has written to Kevin Stewart MSP, Minister for Local Government in Scotland about local authority amendments to the standard building contracts used in Scotland.
You can view the letter here:
And the attatchments here:
And the accompanying guidance note here:
Supplier support to re-open
The Scottish government has announced indicative dates for the remainder of the Phase 2 and early Phase 3 response to the coronavirus. To help you with your plans to re-open and scale up your business the Supplier Journey website provides support and advice on how to bid for public sector contracts. You don't need to register and it's free to use.
Updates regarding planning and building were issued on 29 May. Click here to read them.
What kind of Scotland do we want to see post-lockdown? A series of blogs from Kevin Stewart MSP recognising the impacts of COVID-19, the lockdown and continuing need for physical distancing across Scottish communities, and also the prominent role planning will play in renewal and recovery.
Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020
The Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020 came into force on 7 April 2020. The Act includes provisions relevant to the operation of the planning system. These include extending duration of planning permissions about to expire; publishing planning documents online rather than at physical locations; and allowing authorities to exclude people from meetings for public health reasons. This guidance for stakeholders explains the provisions of the Act.
Construction Scotland has issued a guide entitled Working on site during the COVID-19 pandemic: Construction Guidance (28 May 2020).
COVID-19 – Framework for Decision Making: Scotland's route map through and out of the crisis (21 May 2020).
Coronavirus (COVID-19): framework for decision making - further information (5 May 2020)
The Scottish Government has published further information, following the original publication COVID-19: A Framework for Decision Making. This update sets out further information about the challenges Scotland faces and provides illustrative examples of the steps that might form part of the initial changes to the current lockdown restrictions. The document can be found here.
COVID-19 – regulations laid in Parliament to allow planning system continuity
Regulations have been laid in the Scottish Parliament – to come into force on 24 April – that will help keep planning moving during this emergency period. Read the regulations here. The regulations include the temporary steps to suspend need for public events in pre-application consultation, local review bodies meeting in public and hard copies of EIA reports in physical places.
A guidance note has now been published explaining the temporary changes to the pre-application consultation requirements; including setting out expectations about the replacement of the public event with alternative, web-based approaches.
Information and frequently asked questions on recurring development management issues related to COVID-19.
Scottish Government newsletter for procurement and property, which summarises changes due to COVID-19.
Safer Public Spaces for Scotland: Urban Centres and Green Spaces guidance document focuses on design principles for safer urban centres and green spaces in Scotland during the coronavirus crisis.
The Scottish Government Coronavirus Business Support Fund is being administered by Local Authorities. The ratepayers of businesses located in a non-domestic property that is on 17 March;
in receipt of the Small Business Bonus Scheme (SBBS);
in receipt of Rural Relief; or
eligible for SBBS but in receipt of Nursery Relief or Disabled Relief;
can apply to access a support fund and receive a one-off small business support grant of £10,000. This is only available if they were the ratepayer for a premises occupied for that business use on 17 March 2020.
A separate one-off grant of £25,000 is available to the ratepayers of businesses in the retail, hospitality, leisure sectors operating in a premises with a rateable value of £18,001 or up to £50,999. This is the rateable value as at 17 March 2020 regardless of any subsequent reduction in rateable value due to an appeal. This is only available if they were the ratepayer for a premises occupied for that business use on 17 March 2020.
Eligible ratepayers can apply for a one-off grant payment as detailed below up to 31 March 2021. Only one grant is allowed per ratepayer regardless of the number of premises held.
These grants are aimed at helping keep companies in business and keep productive capacity so that they can recover. Their intention is to protect jobs, prevent business closure and promote economic recovery.
Find out how to apply here. The deadline for applications is 31 March 2021
BusinessWales provides details of support for businesses in Wales including:
A series of free webinars – for small businesses in Wales – topics include; recovery and growth, business diversification, accessing finance and remote working
Help and information for people in Wales from the National Assembly for Wales.
Information and updates for those residing overseas in our Centres regarding COVID-19 and/or construction
View the latest information on how Ireland is responding to cases of COVID-19.
If you are self-employed, find out what help there is for you here.
Find out how to qualify for Short Time Work Support.
For those who have become recently unemployed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, find out about the Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment.
Financial assistance for Cross Border workers can be found here.
The National Standards Authority of Ireland have issued a guide on workplace protection and improvement.
The Construction Industry Federation has a range of information and resources for the construction industry here.
The Construction Industry Federation has published its Standard Site Operating Procedures. Read the guidance here.
A Return to Work Safety Protocol from the Government of Ireland (8 May 2020)
A Back to Work resource pack from CIF (April 2020)
Michael O'Keefe MCIAT has written an article on planning permission delays in ROI. (Please note this does not constitute as official advice.)
Business Continuity Planning Checklist COVID-19 from Dept. of Business, Enterprise and Innovation
Information will be provided shortly.
The government has advised British citizens against all non-essential travel worldwide.
Information for British citizens travelling abroad
Foreign travel advice for each country
Housing and local services
School closures and education
Education and childcare
What parents and carers need to know about closures
Who schools stay open for: advice on children of keyworkers
Support for university research and innovation during coronavirus
Apprenticeship programme response
The Education and Skills Funding Agency is taking steps to ensure that, wherever possible, apprentices can continue and complete their apprenticeship and to support providers during this challenging time. New guidance has been published for apprentices, employers, training providers and assessment organisations.
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
HMRC are delivering a programme of webinars on measures to support employers, employees and the self-employed through this period of disruption. You can watch a video of recorded webinars on the HMRC YouTube channel Coronavirus – (COVID-19): helping employers to support employees.