RESIDENTS have been asked to play their part in protecting each other as national measures are brought in to stop the spread of the Omicron variant. 

From 4am today (Tuesday November 30) – unless exempt – people will be required to wear face coverings in shops, at the bank, in post offices, in hair salons/ barbers and on public transport. 

In schools, the Department for Education has said that coverings should be worn in communal areas by staff, pupils in year 7 and above, and visitors. 

Pupils in Year 7 and above should also continue to wear masks on public transport, unless exempt. 

These measures will be in place until the end of term and will be up for review in January 2022. 

“The council has also sent schools and education settings some handy advice and guidance to help with their Christmas and seasonal events, so that they can continue as safely as possible,” a council spokesman said. 

Anyone arriving into the county from now on will also need to take a PCR test on or before day two of self-isolation until they get a negative result. 

Close contacts of anyone who has tested positive for the Omicron variant are required to isolate for 10 days regardless of their vaccination status. 

Director for public health in Wiltshire, Kate Blackburn said: “This is a fast-moving situation and I’d urge people to follow the latest requirements to help reduce the risk of the Omicron variant in Wiltshire.

“I know that talk and headlines of the variant might be causing some concern and anxiety, but if everyone follows the measures and ensures they are doing what they can to look out for each other then we can mitigate its risk.

“It’s a new variant, but the simple measures we’ve all been taking throughout this pandemic are still important – washing hands regularly, wearing face coverings where required, taking lateral flow tests regularly, getting vaccinated and the booster, and self-isolating and getting a PCR test when displaying any symptoms.

“People can be assured that health teams and scientists throughout the world will be working around the clock to ensure they know everything about this new variant to help keep people as safe as possible.”

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