WQ83008 (e) Tabled on 21/07/2021

Following the announcement of the latest coronavirus restrictions, will the Minister confirm if guests at wedding venues are allowed to dance indoors?

Answered by Economy Minister | Answered on 28/07/2021

The Welsh Government has engaged closely with the wedding sector throughout the pandemic to develop guidance and to provide support.

 

Under the current alert level one restrictions at wedding receptions in hospitality settings, managed table service must remain in place both indoors and outside to minimise the movement of customers within the premises and to avoid customers congregating at the bar or counter. However, for regulated events table service rules would not apply. Businesses must take all reasonable measures to ensure that a distance of 2 metres is maintained between persons when inside the premises, except between people from the same household or permitted groups of up to 6 people from 6 different households not counting persons under the age of 11. This means that businesses must ensure that social distancing is maintained between separate permitted groups or permitted households when indoors. However, there may be some aspects where the symbolism of the act is so integral to the meaning of the ceremony it may not be reasonable to maintain 2 metre distance e.g. walking down the aisle or exchanging rings.

 

There is no limit on the number of people meeting outdoors and there is no longer any requirement to maintain 2 metres social distancing outdoors. Other measures are, however, still required and this may – depending on what is reasonable in the circumstances and on what else is done to minimise the risk of exposure to coronavirus – mean that physical distancing is still required.

 

Dancing indoors represents a risk, given that social distancing is difficult to maintain and heavier breathing increases the production of droplets and aerosol which can contain the virus. Therefore, dancing between members of different households is strongly discouraged due to the risk of transmission. The wedding couple may have a first dance, but social distancing should be maintained between the couple and guests during the dance.

Customers must always ensure they are wearing face coverings when entering the premises, moving about indoors, participating in any shared activities, or to walk through to the outdoor area or to go to the toilets (unless they are under 11 or have a reasonable excuse not to wear a face covering). Customers may remove their face coverings indoors when seated in a designated area for the immediate consumption of food and/or drink.

 

We hope to move to alert level zero on 7 August, provided the public health position allows us to do so. At alert level zero, carrying out a risk assessment will continue to be a legal requirement for wedding events. There will also still be a requirement to put in place reasonable measures to manage the risk of coronavirus but they will be for each business to determine, based on the outcome of the risk assessment, including in relation to 2 metres physical distancing. We are also planning on removing the legal requirement to wear face coverings in hospitality settings from 7 August.