Prime Minister Boris Johnson has confirmed that the rules will take effect on Friday July 24 for the foreseeable future.
This means that if you are going to buy clothes or do your entire supermarket store, you will need to wear a blanket.
The directives will also be imposed in enclosed spaces where social distancing is not possible.
The new changes build on previous rules introduced last month that made face covers mandatory for those who use public transportation.
Anyone who does not follow the rules will be fined up to £ 100.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said it “would give people more confidence to shop safely and improve protections for those who work in stores.”
However, it is not clear how it would be applied to ensure that all buyers wear masks.
“Police involvement will be a last resort”
The National Council of Chiefs of Police (NPCC) has now made it clear in a statement, saying it would only intervene as a last resort.
Martin Hewitt, President of the NPCC, said on Tuesday July 14: “Even if we did not know that the announcement was to be made last night, we have time to work closely with the Department of the Interior, retailers and commercial organizations on the implementation of the new regulation on the wearing of face covers in stores, which is to come into force on July 24.
“We expect retailers to manage entry to their stores and respect for the law while customers are inside, with police intervention as a last resort.”
“As with other coronavirus regulations, we will follow an approach of engaging, explaining, encouraging and applying only when encouragement has failed.
“Experience shows that compliance with regulations to manage the spread of coronavirus is high and this must continue to be a joint effort between the retail industry, customers, government and the police.”
“This is particularly important as demand from the police increases as the lockdown decreases. “
“This could potentially put store personnel at risk”
However, retailers have responded to the plans, saying that store workers should not be the ones enforcing the rules – which means questions remain about who, if any, would ask buyers to wear a blanket and who would made under penalty of fine.
Helen Dickinson, Managing Director of the British Retail Consortium, said: “Retailers have made the safety of staff and customers a top priority and we support measures to protect the health of the public.
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“While retailers will play their part in communicating the new face cover rules, they should not be the ones applying these rules.
“With hundreds of incidents of violence and abuse against retail workers every day, we welcome the announcement that law enforcement will be left to the authorities, rather than potentially endangering it dedicated work colleagues.
“We look forward to more clarity on whether the wearing of face covers will apply to workshop staff.
“If so, there must be flexibility for colleagues who are in the shops all day and can already benefit from other security measures such as protective screens and a distance of 2m.
“Retailers have already spent hundreds of millions to install plexiglass screens, implement social distancing measures and provide additional cleaning in stores; we hope this announcement will make buyers even more confident about returning to the main street. “