Khan: Fines for Non-Mask Wearers Remains on TFL Services


London Mayor Sadiq Khan was amended the TFL conditions of carriage to make the wearing of face coverings mandatory despite the easing of restrictions across England.

In a move that opposes Prime Minister Boris Johnson, London Mayor Sadiq Khan has maintained that face coverings should be worn on all TFL (Transport For London) services as a legal requirement in respect of “greater public safety”.[1]

Prior to today, 19th July 2021, being dubbed so-called ‘Freedom Day’, it has been an offence under The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Wearing of Face Coverings in a Relevant Place) Regulations 2020 to not wear a face covering on public transport, with an attached fine of between £200-£6400 for non-compliance.[2] In the final stage of lockdown restrictions easing, Johnson recommended that it should be expected for individuals to wear their
face coverings in busy public settings where ventilation is poor i.e. the London Underground.

Johnson’s approach differs to that of the Welsh and Scottish government, who continue to make face coverings a legal necessity for use of public transport. Furthermore, Johnson is potentially opposing WHO (World Health Organisation) guidance in that face coverings are a key part to “supress transmission and save lives”,[3] this being very similar to UK governmental campaigns at the beginning of the pandemic.

Despite it no longer being a requirement under government regulations – following the 19th July 2021 – Khan reveals that under the Conditions of Carriage it will remain an offence to not wear a face covering on all TFL services, including private taxis.

Section 2.4 Conditions of Carriage:

“Given the coronavirus pandemic, all passengers over the age of 11 years must wear a face covering when travelling on our services, until further notice”.

“If you are not exempt and you fail to comply with this requirement or directions given by an authorised officer, you may not be allowed entry or may be asked to leave our premises. You may also receive a Fixed Penalty Notice or be prosecuted”.

Failure to comply will result in passengers being expelled and refused entry onto TFL services, being asked to leave TFL premises; or more seriously, an individual may incur monetary penalties, or face prosecution.[4] All employees of TFL are able to enforce the regulations.

Although not releasing his own definitive plans for public transport and mandatory mask wearing, fellow metro mayor, Andy Burnham (Greater Manchester) tentatively supports Khan in that he will not “rule out” following Khan’s decision.

It is an item of public interest to see how Khan’s changes to Johnson’s actions will develop and influence covid statistics over the coming weeks following the 19th July, one of which will be keenly watched and see if Khan’s approach is adopted by other major cities in the UK.

[1] Covid: Masks to remain compulsory on London transport – BBC News [accessed: 15th July 2021]

[2] [accessed: 15th July 2021]

[3] [accessed 15th July 2021]

[4] Paragraph 2.4 Conditions of Carriage: [accessed 15th July 2021]


Government Extends Business Support Measures, But Have They Done Enough?


The Government has now extended the temporary insolvency measures previously implemented, ‘providing further support to businesses during the pandemic’.[1]

Following the recent decision to delay the easing of Covid-19 restrictions from 21 June to 19 July, hospitality businesses are required to continue enforcing all social distancing guidelines as were put in place on 17 May, including limited capacity, wearing of masks unless sat down, and table service.

Despite this, business support measures including the furlough scheme and VAT reduction on hospitality  were initially confirmed to have not been extended past 30 June following the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson’s, questioning from the media. In addition to this, the ban on commercial tenancy evictions was due to be lifted on this date. This meant that businesses struggling financially due to the restrictions could be evicted from the premises, ultimately losing their business.

This has led to business leaders calling on the Treasury to extend such financial support measures in order to bridge the 18-day gap, demanding that the government values the importance of these businesses.

Whilst the government has confirmed that they will continue the furlough scheme, and protect companies from creditor enforcement action until 30 September where their debts relate to the pandemic, much of the current support will cease on 1 July. Business rate exemptions for retailers and hospitality firms will end, furlough wage contributions from employers will increase, and firms will have to start paying deferred VAT bills.[2]

Covid-19 business support was introduced to help businesses that were unable to trade, or whose ability to trade was impacted, due to the pandemic. Loss of such support measures will be detrimental to a number of small businesses, and even larger corporations due to the duration of the pandemic.



British Airways to Introduce a Hybrid Working Model After Covid

The onset of COVID wreaked havoc on the tourism and leisure industry – in particular, the travel sector. Major airlines such as British Airways have seen at least 10,000 job cuts being made in an effort to shore up finances as a result of the economic downturn. One thing has come out of the pandemic, however, and that is the increased popularity of remote work.

British Airways, like many other companies, have created a hybrid working model during the pandemic so employees are split between the office and home. This model has proved successful for the airline, resulting in more talks about whether working remotely should become part of the company’s future. In March 2021, with more and more of its employees stating that they are happy working from home, BA decided to take the leap to fully embracing a hybrid working model after Covid subsides. As well as the benefits that remote work provides to employees, other incentives include the company being able to save money on less office space and contribute towards a greener future. However, the airline is still aware of the difficulties they might face in this move including how to shift operations in a short amount of time and provide employees with wellbeing programmes and outlets. Stuart Kennedy, BA’s director of people, commented on this need to rethink operations for a hybrid model stating that, “we’ll want to consider what the ideal office layout for the future will be. Perhaps it’s less fixed desks and more casual meeting areas, and we need to consider colleague wellbeing, too.” As well as this move to a hybrid model, the company is also considering whether to sell its Waterside HQ in Heathrow to save money. Since the hybrid model will eliminate the need for bigger office spaces, the move to scrap Waterside HQ could prove successful, saving money and being better for the environment. In a separate statement, Kennedy commented on the future aims of BA with remote working stating that, “Our aim is to find a hybrid working model that suits our business, blending the best of office and remote working for our people. We’ve also re-structured our business to emerge from the crisis and are considering whether we still have the need for such a large headquarters building.”

As more and more companies start to see the benefits of remote working, there is a chance that a hybrid model could become the new norm. It would afford companies the chance to cut down on office space and expenses, contribute to a greener future, and give employees more flexibility.