Restrictions in the United Kingdom

Find the latest government COVID-19 guidance for your area (last updated on 23 November).

For information about local lockdowns outside of the UK please contact your local office.


England is in national lockdown from 5 November until Wednesday 2 December,

As you know, the RAD, together with the ISTD and One Dance UK, appealed to the government to provide clarity on what educational activities could continue under lockdown, arguing that syllabus dance classes and the qualifications that they lead to are a vital element of children’s cultural education and overall wellbeing.

We have today received a clear and definitive response from the UK Department of Education saying that exams for regulated qualifications such as graded music, dance or performing arts exams can go ahead during the national restrictions, as long as they are conducted in line with the public health guidance on autumn exams and the guidance specified by the relevant awarding organisation.

Our understanding of the current guidelines is that routine face-to-face dance classes cannot continue, and therefore any examination preparation would need to be made via remote learning.

We recommend that teachers make decisions about whether to enter candidates for exams in liaison with their candidates and, where relevant, their parents/guardians to ensure that everyone is comfortable with the decision.

Dance studios are likewise closed, although with the confirmation from the Department of Education that exams can go ahead, we understand that these spaces can be used for examinations as long as public health guidance is followed. Contact or your local office for further information or visit: the RAD Examinations during the pandemic.

We also believe that in line with guidance for elite sports persons (in indoor and outdoor sports facilities), and professional dancers and choreographers (in fitness and dance studios), dance studios can continue to be used privately, for the purposes of filming online dance classes or for the delivery of live-streamed dance classes.

If continuing to use dance/studios in this limited way, you should continue to undertake risk assessments and implement the system of controls set out in the Covid-secure guidance utilising the resources in the Members Area.


Download an at a glance guide to Coronavirus Restrictions in England.

Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland is set to face a two-week period, starting 27 November, of tougher restrictions. Indoors dance classes are already not permitted under current restrictions. The new measures state that dance studios must close.

Information on tougher restrictions in NI.


Each Council area of Scotland has been assigned to a COVID protection level. There are 5 protection levels, sometimes called ‘tiers’.

From 20 November and for 3 weeks, 11 council areas in Scotland are moving to Level 4 restrictions. Find out which level applies to your area.

Protection Level 0

Dance classes can continue, following COVID secure guidance.

Protection Levels 1 & 2

Sports and exercise are all permitted except age 18+ indoor contact sports (professional permitted).

Protection Level 3

Sports and exercise:

  • Indoor: individual exercise only (exemption for under 18s)
  • Outdoor – all except adult (18+) contact sports (professional permitted)

Protection Level 4

Sports and exercise:

  • (indoor) gyms closed
  • outdoor non-contact sports only (Professional permitted)

Read the full guidance for each protection level.


The Welsh Government has released new guidelines, effective from Monday 9 November, following the firebreak lockdown. These guidelines state that:

  • All sport and leisure facilities can open
  • You can play sport or exercise in a group of up to 30 people outdoors or 15 people indoors, if this is part of an organised activity. Children aged under 11 and those organising the activity (such as coaches) are not included in these numbers, but the organisers will need to take all reasonable measures to manage risk and maintain physical distancing
  • Activities run for the development and well-being of children, such as sports clubs, drama classes, parent and toddler groups, youth groups and religious groups can run outdoors and indoors, subject to the rules around the numbers of people for indoor and outdoor gatherings.

Therefore, we understand that dance classes can resume in Wales from Monday 9 November. Please refer to local guidance.