SOCIAL gatherings of more than six people will become illegal across England from today (Monday) following an abrupt rise in coronavirus cases.

The new regulations were confirmed by Prime Minister Boris Johnson last week and will prohibit groups of seven or more people from meeting anywhere socially indoors or outdoors.

The Prime Minister said: “In England from Monday we are introducing the rule of six.

“You must not meet socially in groups of more than six.

“And, if you do, you will be breaking the law.”

As things stand, it will not apply to schools, work spaces or Covid-secure weddings, funerals and organised team sports.

Read more: Will there be a second lockdown? Boris Johnson gives update

Those failing to comply with the new rules will receive an initial fine of £100, doubling up to a maximum of £3,200.

The news comes during a month when eleven more people on the Isle of Wight were confirmed to have tested positive for the virus, taking the total number of cases to 443, with 88 deaths.

Read more: New cases of Covid-19 on the Isle of Wight

Until now, people have only faced fines for gathering in groups of more than 30, and have been able to meet inside with one other household.

Isle of Wight County Press: Groups will be limited to six people from Monday other than those exempt from the new rulesGroups will be limited to six people from Monday other than those exempt from the new rules

What are the exemptions to the 'rule of six'?

Boris Johnson added that there will be some exemptions to the 'rule of six'.

Mr Johnson said: “There will be some limited exemptions. For example, if a single household or support bubble is larger than six, then obviously they can still gather."

The following venues can still hold more than six in total:

  • Places of worships
  • Gyms
  • Restaurants
  • Hospitality venues
  • Education settings (Nurseries, schools, colleges and universities)
  • Work settings

The PM added: "Within those venues, however, there must not be individual groups larger than six and groups must not mix socially or form larger groups.

“Covid-secure weddings and funerals can go ahead up to a limit of 30 people and organised sport will still be able to proceed.”