Where are Wales' local lockdowns and what are the rules?

People living in the Welsh places where local lockdowns apply will not be able to leave the area without "reasonable excuse" to do so. Credit: PA Images

As coronavirus cases rise across the country, Welsh Government have made the decision to impose local lockdown restrictions in areas where virus transmission appears to be at its worst.

Cardiff, Swansea and Llanelli have been placed under tougher restrictions - joining residents in Rhondda Cynon Taf, Caerphilly and Newport, among others.

Neath Port Talbot, the Vale of Glamorgan and Torfaen will be placed in local lockdown from 6pm on Monday 28 September.

The new lockdown measures that apply to these areas are not on the same scale as those introduced for the whole of Wales back in March, but they do limit things like socialising and travelling in an attempt to slow the spread of coronavirus.

Two million people will be affected by the new rules and will be living under the tighter restrictions.

Face coverings became mandatory for all people over the age of 11 in indoor public spaces on 14 September. Credit: ITV Wales
  • So when do these new restrictions come into force and why in these particular areas?


Caerphilly County Borough was the first Welsh area to face a tightening of restrictions. People living there were placed under local lockdown on Tuesday 8 September following a rise in Covid-19 cases.

At the time, Welsh Government said the positive cases were linked to "clusters of people meeting indoors, not following social distancing guidelines and summer holidays overseas".

Rhondda Cynon Taf

The next to go, Rhondda Cynon Taf went into local lockdown on Thursday 17 September. The proportion of tests coming back with a positive result there is the highest for any area in Wales. Originally most of these were in younger people but now there are positive cases among all age groups.

These cases come from lots of small clusters throughout the area which have led to community transmission.

Blaenau Gwent

On Monday 22 September Welsh Government announced that Blaenau Gwent would be in local lockdown from 6pm the following day. Cases have been linked to pubs and a lack of social distancing in the area but there have also been some incidents in care home staff and schools.


Coronavirus cases here have risen sharply in a short amount of time, giving Welsh Government concern that Bridgend is following in the footsteps of Rhondda Cynon Taf. Small clusters have been identified throughout the borough.

People living in Bridgend will also find local lockdown restrictions imposed from 6pm on Tuesday 22 September.

People in Merthyr Tydfil will be living under local lockdown from 6pm on 22 September. Credit: PA Images

Merthyr Tydfil

Merthyr Tydfil has been a rise in cases that were mostly centered around a large employer and a pub but two further small clusters have been identified. The health minister said on Monday 21 September that they are seeing "more evidence of community transmission" now in Merthyr which is why the local lockdown decision was made.

The new rules will come into effect here from 6pm on 22 September.


Another area to go into lockdown from 6pm on 22 September, Newport was added to the list because cases are widespread across the city and they cannot be traced back to specific clusters.

Originally cases here were linked to a house party in late August and several pubs.


On Saturday 26 September at 6pm, the town of Llanelli will go into local lockdown. A sharp rise in cases there has been identified. Eight out of ten cases of the virus in Carmarthenshire are traced to the town of Llanelli.

This will be the first Welsh town to face localised restrictions. The specific wards covered in the defined area of Llanelli are:

  • Bigyn

  • Bynea

  • Dafen

  • Elli

  • Felinfoel

  • Glanymor

  • Hendy

  • Hengoed

  • Llangennech

  • Lliedi

  • Llwynhendy

  • Tyisha

  • Swiss Valley


The Health Minister announced on Friday 25 that Cardiff would be facing lockdown from Sunday 27 at 6pm. He pointed at people not socially distancing and a few clusters from workplaces causing a rise in cases here.


People living in Swansea will join Cardiff on Sunday evening going into lockdown. Cases have rapidly increased in this area and they are linked to household contacts and social contact.

On Friday 25 September it was announced that Cardiff, Swansea and Llanelli were all set for lockdown. Credit: PA Images

Neath Port Talbot

Neath Port Talbot will be placed under tougher restrictions from 6pm on Monday 28 September. It follows a rise in the number of coronavirus cases in the area.

Vale of Glamorgan

Coronavirus restrictions are being tightened in the Vale of Glamorgan as the county will go into local lockdown on 6pm on Monday 28 September.


First Minister Mark Drakeford announced that Torfaen would join other counties in Wales in a local lockdown. The restrictions will be in force from 6pm on Monday 28 September.

Wrexham, Denbighshire, Conwy and Flintshire

On Tuesday 29 September, the health minister announced a local lockdown would be put in place in four counties across north Wales, to prevent the virus spreading further as cases continued to rise.

The same restrictions already in place across twelve areas of south Wales will be introduced in Wrexham, Denbighshire, Conwy and Flintshire from 6pm on Thursday 1 October.

Vaughan Gething said tighter restrictions were needed after identifying a similar pattern of transmission as had occurred in south Wales.

  • What do the numbers say?

After being placed into local lockdown, Caerphilly's numbers began to subside. Where there was an incident rate of 72.9 positive cases per 100,000 of the population when the county went into lockdown, that number is decreasing and reached 35.3 in late September.

The number of positive cases per 100,000 of the population over the past seven days (data correct as of 25 September):

Blaenau Gwent - 201.8

Merthyr Tydfil - 169.1

Rhondda Cynon Taf - 128.5

Bridgend - 77.5

Swansea - 56.3

Carmarthenshire - 45 - Llanelli is responsible for 8 out of 10 cases in Carmarthenshire.

Cardiff - 37.9

Caerphilly - 35.3

Newport - 33.6

This is the picture in other Welsh local authority areas that are not currently in local lockdown:

Torfaen - 28.7

Conwy - 26.4

Flintshire - 26.3

Denbighshire - 26.1

Neath Port Talbot - 25.8

Vale of Glamorgan - 24

Anglesey - 17.1

Wrexham - 12.5

Pembrokeshire - 10.3

Monmouthshire - 9.5

Powys - 7.6

Gwynedd - 6.4

Ceredigion - 4.1

Empty high streets have become a staple since the onset of the pandemic. Credit: PA Images

Welsh Government use these statistics, along with other data like where the cases have originated from, to decide whether to impose restrictions.

Health minister, Vaughan Gething previously said that the decision to place an area into lockdown is not just based on the number of positive cases but an important deciding factor is if there is evidence of community transmission.

If there is a relatively large amount of cases but they can be traced back to a few isolated clusters, that does not necessarily mean the area will be placed into lockdown.

Caerphilly was the first Welsh county to enter local lockdown Credit: PA Images
  • What are the local lockdown rules?

The local lockdown rules are the same across all six areas.

  • People will not be allowed to enter or leave the council area without a "reasonable excuse", such as travel for work or education.

  • People will only be able to meet others that they do not live with, outdoors. People will not be able to meet members of their extended household indoors or form an extended household.

  • All licensed premises will have to close at 10:20pm - as of Thursday 24 September all licensed premises throughout Wales have to close at this time and they must stop selling alcohol by 10pm. This also means supermarkets and shops cannot sell alcohol after 10 o'clock.

  • Everyone over the age of 11 must wear face coverings in indoor public places – as is now the case throughout Wales.

These rules differ slightly to those in place in some areas of England where lockdowns are also in place.

The first Welsh areas placed into local lockdown are all in the south east of the country. Credit: ITV Wales
  • How do people living in the areas affected feel about the new rules?

One taxi driver ITV Wales spoke to in Merthyr said he was concerned about what these local lockdown restrictions would mean for his business.

Geraint Handley said business had finally started to pick back up recently because of things like the UK Government's Eat Out to Help Out scheme. He said he was "petrified now" that this local lockdown would put him "back at square one" - especially if it is longer than a few weeks.

  • Watch ITV Wales Political Correspondent Owain Phillips' report on how some people in south east Wales felt ahead of going into local lockdown:

Another business owner in Newport said lockdown is going to have a "detrimental" long term impact. Enzo Nigro owns a bar in the city and said it is "already difficult" and now a curfew of 11pm will make it even more so.

He is concerned about being able to bring in enough money during reduced opening times to cover all his costs.