Note from Public Health
Over the festive period you are allowed a Christmas Bubble between 23rd – 27th December. Before and after this time you may use Childcare Bubbles and Support Bubbles. But not mix a Christmas Bubble with any other type of bubble.
Child Care Bubble.
From 2 December, childcare bubbles are allowed in all Tiers.
A childcare bubble is where one household links with one other household to provide informal childcare to a child or children under 14. All adults in both households must agree to this arrangement. ‘Informal’ childcare means it is unpaid and unregistered.
Members of either household can provide childcare in a home or public place. This includes overnight care.
You can only have one childcare bubble with one other household. This means no household should be part of more than one childcare bubble.
You can only use a childcare bubble for childcare. You cannot use a childcare bubble to mix with another household for other reasons.
If your child lives in more than one location
You can mix indoors where necessary with the other parent to allow your child to move between homes.
A child moving between 2 parents who live separately is not counted as a childcare bubble. This means both you and the other parent can also form a childcare bubble with one other household.
A support bubble is a support network which links 2 households. You have to meet certain criteria to form a support bubble. This means not everyone will be able to form a support bubble.
Once you’re in a support bubble, you can think of yourself as being in one ‘household’. It means you can have close contact with the other household in your bubble as if they were members of your own household. This means you do not need to maintain social distance with people in your support bubble.
If you share custody of your child with someone you do not live with
If you share custody of a child with someone you do not live with, the child can move freely between both parents’ households.
If you meet one of the above criteria, you may also form a support bubble.
Between 23 and 27 December:
- you can form an exclusive ‘Christmas bubble’ composed of people from no more than three households
- you can only be in one Christmas bubble
- you cannot change your Christmas bubble
- you can travel between tiers and UK nations for the purposes of meeting your Christmas bubble
- you can only meet your Christmas bubble in private homes or in your garden, places of worship, or public outdoor spaces
- you can continue to meet people who are not in your Christmas bubble outside your home according to the rules in the tier you are meeting in
- if you form a Christmas bubble, you should not meet socially with friends and family that you do not live with in your home or garden unless they are part of your Christmas bubble