FAMILIES will not be able to hold hands or hug their relatives in care homes after close contact visits were halted for lockdown.

The government previously announced families would be able to spend quality time with their loved ones by taking two coronavirus tests a week.

Now that cases have risen, and a third national lockdown has been imposed, those close contact visits have now been cancelled for the foreseeable future.

Cllr Andy Morgan, who runs Bakewells Care Home in Deane, confirmed that the visits would no longer be able to take place.

He said: "Unfortunately, close contact visits are no longer allowed, but families are still able to visit their loved ones.

"It hasn't affected us much here at Bakewells – we've got a pod that's really comfortable, it's nice and warm, and it fits people's needs, so we only had one family say they wanted touch visits.

"The visiting pods and the window visits are still able to go ahead – they have to be pre-booked because of the cleaning and organisation but they are still available."

Contact your relative's care home for more information on visiting times and procedures.