HERE is everything you need to know about the new rules for wearing face masks.

Why have Number 10 introduced this now?

A spokesman said: “There is growing evidence that wearing a face covering in an enclosed space helps protect individuals and those around them from coronavirus. The PM has been clear that people should be wearing face coverings in shops and we will make this mandatory from July 24.”

How much could I be fined and how will it be enforced?

The regulations will be made under the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984, with a maximum fine of £100 – reduced to £50 if it is paid within 14 days.

Enforcement of the regulations will be the responsibility of the police. While shop workers will be asked to encourage compliance, retailers and businesses will not be expected to enforce them.

As is the case on public transport, children under 11 and those with certain disabilities will be exempt.

What have the British Chambers of Commerce said?

They urged the government to issue detailed guidance on the new requirement as soon as possible.

“Businesses need clarity on the approach to the wearing of face coverings that is consistent and supported by public health evidence,” said BCC co-executive director Claire Walker.

“Updated guidance, including on enforcement, should be issued swiftly so firms can maintain their Covid-secure status and continue their operations successfully.”

What do other politicians think?

For Labour, shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth said: “The government has been slow and muddled again over face coverings.

“Given the government’s own guidance issued on May 11 advised in favour of face masks, many will ask why yet again have ministers been slow in making a decision in this pandemic, and why it’ll take another 11 days before these new guidelines to come into force.”

London mayor Sadiq Khan has been pressing for face coverings to be made mandatory.

He said: “It’s a disgrace that there’s been days of mixed messages and confused communications from ministers. We can’t afford to wait another day and the government should bring this policy in immediately – further delay risks lives.”