MILLIONS of kids WILL be able to go trick or treating this year – as long as they do not cross the threshold into someone else’s home.
Downing Street said children living in Tier 1 and Tier 2 lockdown areas can still take part in the ghoulish festivities.
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But Tier 3 lockdown councils told families not to go out, and warned the cops will be out to catch anyone flouting their orders.
In ‘very high level’ alert areas like Greater Manchester, Liverpool and South Yorkshire, people mustn’t meet in groups in private outdoor spaces – which include gardens and on people’s doorsteps.
But they are allowed to do so in Tier 2 – such as in London and parts of Birmingham as long as they don’t go inside the house.
Anyone mingling in a group of more than six across the country could face fines too – and kids don’t count in the total in England.
The PM’s spokesman told families to use their “common sense” and stick to the local lockdown rules in their area on October 31.
He said: “The rules are there for all circumstances and people will have to use their common sense in ensuring they’ve followed the rules.”
And he refused to say families should shun trick or treating this year.
Robert Halfon, Tory MP and boss of the education select committee, said that after a rough year kids should be free to enjoy Halloween.
He told The Sun: “Thank goodness that the only people scared away on Halloween are the bureaucrats trying to stop kids’ treats.”
Downing Street said Brits should follow the rules in their local area when they decide whether to go door knocking for sweets.
But many councils under the harshest lockdown restrictions took matters into their own hands and have banned trick or treating.
Councils in Lancashire and South Yorkshire are among those who have warned locals they could get stopped by the cops if they go door to door this year.
Angie Ridgwell, from Lancashire County Council, said: “People will need to find alternative celebrations to traditional trick or treating.”
Police will be patrolling the streets to order anyone who flouts the rules back inside, she warned.
Terry Woods, Deputy Chief Constable for Lancashire Constabulary, said: “Our overall approach will be unchanged to other years.
“If we come across people behaving anti-socially, then we will deal with them firmly. Halloween is a time for people to enjoy themselves, but people still need to be sensible.
“Lancashire Police will continue to take a common sense and proportionate approach to the enforcement of Covid rules.
“This includes speaking to people initially to help and inform them, and only enforcing the rules where we are faced with unacceptable behaviour, or we have exhausted all other options.”
Kill-joy bureaucrats in South Yorkshire are also telling kids to stay home and “avoid trick or treating” this year.
Local cops said they will ramp up patrols on Halloween and Bonfire night to stop people taking part in the usual celebrations.
The police warned: “Trick or treating is being discouraged, in order to prevent the spread of Covid-19, as are Halloween and bonfire parties that break the current social distancing rules set out by the Government.”
But confusion erupted last night over whether trick or treating would actually breach Covid rules in Tier 3 areas.
Haloween rules for trick or treating
- No trick or treating groups should include more than six people – as this would break the rule of six (applies nationwide)
- This includes children in England – but kids are exempt from the rule in Wales and Scotland
- In Tier 1 kids can continue trick or treating as normal, but should take extra care if they are taking sweets from other homes, and make sure hands are washed
- In Tier 2 and 3 households are banned from mixing in private homes unless they are part of a bubble – so no going indoors
- In Tier 2 it’s fine to meet in gardens, so trick or treating will be allowed
- But in Tier 3 people shouldn’t mix in gardens – so technically they should not enter them to knock on others’ doors
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Homes with front doors opening on to the street may be allowed to have trick or treaters as this is a public space.
But those with a front garden or path may be banned because this would be classified a private outdoor space and fall foul of Tier 3 rules.