The government has announced people from different households will not be allowed to meet each other indoors.

Separate households across East Lancashire, which include Blackburn and Darwen, Hyndburn, Pendle, Rossendale and Burnley, will be banned from meeting indoors from midnight tonight.

The latest announcement by Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the move was part of "immediate action" to keep people safe.

Residents from seperate households will also be banned from meeting indoors in places including Greater Manchester and parts of West Yorkshire after a rise in coronavirus cases.

Mr Hancock said: "We're constantly looking at the latest data on the spread of coronavirus, and unfortunately we've seen an increasing rate of transmission in parts of Northern England.

He added: "We take this action with a heavy heart, but we can see increasing rates of covid across Europe and are determined to do whatever is neccessary to keep people safe." 

Reacting to the move on Twitter, Scotland First Secretary Nicola Sturgeon said: "The UK government is right to act quickly if they think the situation warrants it.

"But this is a sharp reminder that the threat of this virus is still very real."

It is important to stress at this time that the new measures do not affect businesses across East Lancashire due to the social distancing measures currently being adhered to within the business premises. 

The same restrictions will also apply to Leicester, which saw the first so-called "local lockdown" imposed on June 29.

With Eid taking place tomorrow (Friday July 31) the Lancashire Council of Mosques said tonight, "The LCM would like to confirm as per government announcement that from midnight (Friday 31st July 2020) people from separate households are banned from visiting one another. However, #EidSalah can still take place in #Covid secure Masaajid. #EidAlAdha."