A BUS company says it will to continue to advise its passengers to wear a mask despite restrictions easing on 19 July.

Brighton and Hove Buses say that to ensure its staff and customers are kept safe, it will not be relaxing its guidance around wearing face coverings.

Face masks have been mandatory on public transport for the past year to reduce the spread of the virus.

The Argus: Brighton and Hove buses say customers will still be advised to wear a maskBrighton and Hove buses say customers will still be advised to wear a mask

But those rules will be replaced with government guidance advising passengers to wear masks only on busy services.

Most Covid restrictions will be removed on Monday, and while Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said he expects masks to be worn in crowded places, such as on a busy bus, they will no longer be compulsory.

Brighton and Hove and Metrobus Managing Director Martin Harris said he agrees with the government’s advice that masks should continue to be worn in enclosed spaces.

He said: "To continue to keep customers safe, from 19 July customers will notice very little difference. We will continue to maintain measures such as thoroughly cleaning our buses and extra touch point cleaning, providing hand sanitiser on board and keeping windows open to refresh the air.

“Capacity numbers will revert to pre-pandemic levels and almost all of the measures we have put in place throughout the pandemic and the guidance we have applied will remain in place.

"The government, our local authority and public health teams are advising that people continue to wear face coverings in enclosed spaces.

“We fully support this, and our messaging on face coverings on buses remains in place. We highly recommend that passengers who can wear face coverings continue to wear them unless exempt.

“This is the same recommendation for all enclosed spaces such as shops. As the final details are being worked through, I would ask all passengers to continue to act responsibly to help keep each other safe."

It comes after the transport secretary said he supported a decision to make masks compulsory on the London Underground after July 19.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan said he was forced to act to make masks a condition of carriage across the capital’s transport network because of the government’s decision to lift restrictions.

It comes as leading medics called for face masks to be mandatory in healthcare settings.