Home » Covid Pass Starts In England: Proof Of Double-Vaccination Or A Negative Test To Enter Clubs

Covid Pass Starts In England: Proof Of Double-Vaccination Or A Negative Test To Enter Clubs

  • by

Adults in England must show a Covid pass to enter nightclubs, big sports matches and large events from today – despite a major Tory rebellion over the new measures.

Nearly 100 Tory MPs defied the whip yesterday to vote against introducing the mandatory passes – which will still go ahead thanks to support from Labour.

Under the new rules, people will have to prove they are fully jabbed or have had a recent negative Covid test before they can go to venues where large crowds gather.

Two vaccine doses will be treated as fully-vaccinated but this will be kept under review because of the booster programme.

A negative PCR or rapid lateral flow test, or exemption from vaccination, will also be sufficient under the requirement.

Venues could be fined up to £10,000 for failing to check passes, while the faking of a pass could also attract the same penalty.

The Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) said it is ‘disappointed’ in the new measures being voted into law, warning they have ‘dampened trade’ by 30 per cent in Scotland and 26 per cent in Wales.

The passports will apply to all unseated indoor venues with more than 500 people, unseated outdoor venues with more than 4,000 people and any venue with more than 10,000 people.

Some fans have their Covid passes checked outside Etihad Stadium prior to the Premier League match between Manchester City and Leeds United last night

Hundreds of people queue at a vaccination centre on Solihull High Street, West Midlands, on Tuesday as the Covid booster vaccination programme is ramped up

People queue for their booster dose outside a coronavirus vaccination centre in London on Tuesday. Two vaccine doses will be treated as fully-vaccinated for a Covid pass but this will be kept under review because of the booster programme

Under the rules, people will have to prove they are fully vaccinated or have had a recent negative Covid test before they can go to venues where large crowds gather

Some 369 MPs backed the move to introduce Covid passes – which have also been known as vaccine passports – giving a majority of 243.

But the division list showed 96 Conservative MPs voted against.

It came ahead of the NHS Covid Pass app going down for eight hours last night as the health service made ‘essential updates’.

Those looking to travel between 10pm and 6am were urged to download their proof of a negative result.

The Department of Health said the interference to the digital service was part of ‘planned maintenance’.

The NHS’s official Twitter page wrote: ‘The NHS COVID Pass will be unavailable from 10pm this evening until 6am tomorrow morning to allow us to complete some essential updates.

‘If you need your Pass to travel during these times, make sure you have downloaded a copy, or save it to your Apple Wallet or Google Pay.’

And the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said the ordering of lateral flow tests on the Government website was temporarily suspended amid ‘exceptionally high demand’.

It said the pause is temporary and availability refreshed daily, with people encouraged to re-visit the website from Tuesday.

Mr Johnson was asked about supply issues during a visit to a vaccination clinic near Paddington in west London, and told broadcasters there is a ‘ready supply’.

Covid checks are made on fans outside Etihad Stadium before the Premier League match between Manchester City and Leeds United

Covid passes are checked for some fans in Manchester last night. The passports will apply to all unseated indoor venues with more than 500 people, unseated outdoor venues with more than 4,000 people and any venue with more than 10,000 people

A sign notifying fans of a coronavirus check area outside Etihad Stadium before a Premier League match yesterday

What are the new Covid pass rules coming into force in England today?

Under the new regulations, people will have to prove they are fully vaccinated or have had a recent negative Covid test before they can go to venues where large crowds gather.

The passports will apply to all unseated indoor venues with more than 500 people, unseated outdoor venues with more than 4,000 people and any venue with more than 10,000 people.

Two vaccine doses will be treated as fully-vaccinated but this will be kept under review because of the booster programme.

A negative PCR or rapid lateral flow test, or exemption from vaccination, will also be sufficient under the requirement.

You can get an NHS Covid Pass digitally through the NHS App or the online NHS Covid Pass service.

If you cannot apply digitally using the app or online, you can ask for an NHS Covid Pass letter to be sent via post.

He said: ‘They can get those tests, we do have a ready supply of lateral flow tests.

‘If you can’t get one online for any reason, then there are ample supplies in the shops.

‘But what I think, if I may say so, what that also shows is that people are doing the sensible thing, and getting tests as well.’

Meanwhile, some within the nightclub sector have spoken out against the new measures, saying they are a ‘slippery path’.

Michael Kill, CEO of the NTIA, said: ‘We are disappointed that MPs have voted in to law Covid passports for nightclubs.

‘The NTIA have consistently opposed their introduction due to the many logistical challenges they pose for night time economy businesses and what we have seen in Scotland and Wales where they have dampened trade by 30 per cent and 26 per cent respectively.

‘It is very disappointing that, after flip flopping on the issue twice, the Government have decided to press ahead with the plans despite no evidence of their impact on transmission of the virus.’

He added: ‘This is a slippery path we are going down. I would urge the Government to listen to its backbenchers now – this far and no further.

‘The Government’s public health messaging over the last two weeks has cost the industry billions in trade, lost stock and staff hours. These additional restrictions will jeopardise the survival of businesses in 2022 – we need urgent additional support now.

‘And it goes without saying that if more measures are increased we need a proportionate support package including a return of the furlough scheme.

‘Our members have supported the national pandemic effort for over two years, closing when they were asked, limiting trade, working with guidelines which took investment on new mitigations and training to be able to open there doors, and keep customers and staff safe.’

More than 70 Tories have expressed concerns about the Covid pass proposals – with claims they are illogical and illiberal.

After talks with the Prime Minister on Tuesday morning, one ministerial aide among those on resignation watch as he considered voting against Plan B said he would support the measures despite ‘big misgivings’.

People enjoy a night out at the Astoria nightclub in Portsmouth, Hampshire, on Tuesday night before Covid passes came into effect

A huge queue is seen outside the Astoria nightclub in Portsmouth last night before Covid passes came into effect

People dress up in festive outfits as they take part in Christmas celebrations in Portsmouth, Hampshire, on Tuesday night

Revellers are seen on a night out at the Astoria nightclub in Portsmouth, Hampshire, last night

Danny Kruger, a parliamentary private secretary to Cabinet member Michael Gove, said he would only back the measures ‘thus far and no further’.

But others maintained in the Commons that they would vote against the Government.

Forest of Dean MP Mark Harper urged MPs to vote against the proposed measures to introduce vaccine passes for venues and events, saying it would send a ‘clear signal’ to the Government to ‘rethink its approach’.

The former chief whip said: ‘They are very limited at the moment about what is proposed, but that was true everywhere they were introduced around the world. Everywhere they have been introduced, they have extended it, in terms of the venues they apply to.

‘Anyone who thinks that they are going to stick to what is currently on the order paper, I am afraid are kidding themselves.’

Fellow Conservative MP Steve Brine added: ‘On the vaccine passport, I will not support that. I think it crosses a Rubicon. I think Italy began in exactly this way saying it was all about providing lateral flow tests, and I think it will move and move quite quickly’.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said it was his ‘understanding’ that the idea of vaccine-only passes – as included in the original Plan B – had now been abandoned

MPs announcing the result of a vote for Coronavirus regulations yesterday, in the House of Commons, as MPs voted 441 to 41, majority 400, to approve regulations to extend the requirement to wear face coverings to more indoor spaces in England

Conservative former minister Dame Andrea Leadsom said the regulations were a ‘slippery slope which I do not want to slip’, also telling MPs: ‘Our Covid measures have and continue to hurt our citizens.’

And Dr Luke Evans said he could not support Covid passes, telling the Commons: ‘I worry about the slippery slope. What businesses, what society interactions or what infections may become in scope in future months or future years?’

But Health Secretary Sajid Javid told MPs: ‘I think it is absolutely vital there is always an option for lateral flow tests, and I would not support a vaccine-only option.’

And the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said it was his ‘understanding’ that the idea of vaccine-only passes – as included in the Government’s original Plan B – had now been abandoned.

Other measures under the Government’s Plan B also cleared the Commons, including to drop the requirement to isolate and instead do daily Covid tests for those fully vaccinated people who are contacts of a positive Covid case.

MPs also approved mandatory vaccinations for NHS and social care staff by April 2022 and the requirement to wear face coverings to more indoor spaces in England – including museums and galleries.