It remains illegal to travel to or from England from Wales without a reasonable excuse despite the English lockdown being lifted today.
Since the fire-break was lifted it has been illegal to cross the border without a reason such as education or work.
The rationale for the rule was that England was in a lockdown and cases were very high.
That lockdown is over but the restrictions have not been lifted meaning you could still be fined.
The rules currently state: “Travel out of Wales is only allowed under limited circumstances, such as for work or education.
“You will also need to follow the laws in place in England, which the Welsh Government cannot advise you on.”
What exactly are the current rules?
According to the Welsh Government regulations: “No person living outside Wales may enter or remain in Wales without a reasonable excuse”.
The add that “No person living in Wales may leave Wales without a reasonable excuse.”
When will the rules be changing?
There is no confirmed date for these restrictions being lifted.
The First Minister indicated in Plenary yesterday that the cabinet would meet today to discuss the matter but gave no indication of when an announcement would be made.
“One of the items on our agenda will be travel advice and travel arrangements in the post lockdown period in England.” said Mark Drakeford.
Before Wales’ fire-break there had been an ongoing debate over the issue of border travel which culminated in the Welsh Government banning people from areas of England with high Covid rates travelling to Wales.
Is cross border travel a real issue in spreading the virus?
It certainly seems to be a factor.
T he Welsh Government has previously pointed to four reasons to be concerned at cross border transmission after a report by the Public Health Wales Pathogen Genomics Unit and Cardiff University School of Biosciences. It looked at the genomics of the outbreaks in Wales to see what conclusions can be drawn and found:
1. Rising cases linked to outside Wales coincides with UK-wide lockdown restrictions
The evidence does seem to suggest that the proportion of cases that could be related back to new introductions (from places outside Wales) “began to rise again during July and August, coinciding with UK-wide lockdown relaxations”.
The researchers said: “This observation/analysis also supports the conclusions from the analysis of outbreak cases.
“When looking at the situation during the first wave, it is clear that the lockdown restrictions had a significant effect in reducing imports from England/outside Wales. It is also clear that there has been an increase in imports into Wales over the course of the summer.”
2. High proportion of cases could be linked to imports
Researchers said: “We have been analysing evidence for importation of lineages into Wales, particularly from England. This shows that early on in the pandemic a high proportion of cases could be linked to imports, with the number decreasing significantly following lockdown.”
3. Vast majority of infections are linked to super-spreaders
Mr Drakeford said up to 80% of new infections are spread by super spreaders so “it doesn’t take many people coming in who are super-spreaders to have an effect”.
4. Waste water analysis found similarities in virus strains
Mr Drakeford also said that waste water monitoring in north Wales found “significant” similarities between the strains of the virus in north Wales and Liverpool.