Police are not able to enforce government guidance around keeping a two metre distance or wearing face masks, the College of Policing said.

In the latest guidance issued on Wednesday, the National Police Chiefs’ Council and College of Policing reminded officers they could only enforce the Health Protection Regulations.

Those regulations were updated this week to allow people to collect goods from businesses that remain open, visit garden centres and outdoor sports courts. People can visit parks or other open spaces with one member of another household. Viewing properties for sale or to rent is also allowed.

Gatherings of three or more people from different households are not allowed.

The guidance says: “Officers should only enforce the Health Protection Regulations – government guidance is not enforceable, for example two-metre distancing, avoiding public transport or the wearing of face coverings in enclosed spaces.”

Fines for those caught breaching the regulations have increased from £60 to £100, with the maximum penalty now £3,200.