London Borough Market becomes first outdoor space in Britain where face masks are legally enforced

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Borough Market in London is the first outdoor area in the U.K. where the presence of a face mask is mandated.

From Monday, shoppers and sellers in the groceries and beverages market will face a penalty of £50 if they don't wear face veils in and around the stalls.

Borough Market has its own bylaws, agreed upon in parliament and dating from pre-Victorian times and updated to reflect the pandemic.

Kate Howell, development director at Central London, said: "I believe we simply have to be accountable."

Market organizers have encouraged people to wear masks and stay away from the pandemic, but as rates rise across the capital and a third national strike moves in England, they feel compelled to go further.

Thousands of people visited the market every day before the shutdown, and Mrs Howell echoed other voices from the sector that described the hospitality sector as "really hard hit by this whole period"

Her comments come after the Government's top paramedic hinted there may be times when it feels "logic" to wear a mask outside.

Principal surgeon Prof Whitty highlighted the extent of the threat and said 30.000 people remain at the hospital, up from a peak of 18.000 in April.