PEOPLE in Herefordshire have been told to limit their social contacts by the county's public health chief as they celebrate the new year.

But there is an expectation that people from Wales will cross to Hereford's clubs and bars with stricter curbs on the other side of the border.

Nightclubs are shut in Wales after new rules were introduced by Labour First Minister Mark Drakeford, and face masks, social distancing and the rule of six are back for pubs.

Boris Johnson has urged the public to enjoy New Year celebrations in a “cautious and sensible way” as he continued to drive forward the Covid-19 vaccination programme.

Asked about reports of people travelling across the border from Wales and Scotland into England to celebrate the New Year, Mr Johnson told reporters: “I think everybody should enjoy New Year but in a cautious and sensible way.

“Take a test, ventilation, think about others – but, above all, get a booster.”

Mr Johnson said “I cannot stress too much” how important it is to get a booster jab to be able to enjoy the New Year “sensibly and cautiously”.

The latest figures from the health agencies show 63.7 per cent of the county had now had a third or booster dose.

And in Herefordshire, Dr Rebecca Howell-Jones, the council's acting director of public health, told people to prioritise who they meet.

“Many of us want to go out and enjoy ourselves," she said, issuing a similar warning to before Christmas.

"But it’s important to remember to keep yourself and others safe. This is why we are asking people to prioritise meetings that are most important to them and limit other social contacts.

“It’s really important to take a lateral flow test if you do plan to meet people.

“If you have a negative test, keep a one-metre distance and wear a mask wherever possible. Remember, socialising outside is safer than being indoors.

“Don’t forget the other important measures we should all be taking every day to reduce the spread of the virus. Keep washing and sanitising hands; wear face coverings when out shopping, in places of worship and on public transport; work from home where possible and let fresh air into indoor spaces.

 “If you haven’t yet had your vaccination or booster, now is the time to book.

 “And if you have a temperature, cough, loss or change to your sense of smell or taste, no matter how mild, you need to isolate and get a PCR test as quickly as possible.”

With no new rules in England ahead of the new year, Play Nightclub Hereford, in Blue School Street, said it meant "the party can continue".

The Left Bank Village, near the Old Bridge, said: “This year, we will be taking measures to ensure we can all enjoy ourselves in a safe environment.”

It said there would be socially distanced seating, inside and out.

A Rule of Tum, in Aubrey Street, was upbeat despite the uncertainty over new Covid rules.

A spokesperson for the company, run by Dorian and Edwin Kirk, said last-minute cancellations had been an issue, but it was prepared for any eventuality if new rules come.

The Welsh Government has said there are "no restrictions in place for travel into or out of Wales" from the UK.

But it has warned against travelling to areas with high Covid rates.