A new study shows that only one in three people have stopped meeting up with friends and family because of the rule of six.

Scientists at the London School for Hygiene and Tropical Medicine found that coronavirus restrictions such as the rule of six and the 10pm pub curfew is having minimal impact on slowing the spread of Covid-19.

Two thirds of the thousands of people spoken to in the study said the rule of six somewhat limited their social interactivity.

But the study even revealed that a quarter of participants admitted they have seen more people on average since the rule came into force.

And while the rule still allows for general gatherings up to six people, only one in three people stopped meeting up with friends and family because of the rule.

So while the restrictions may have reduced some social contacts, it was balanced out by the people who have increased theirs.

The scientists concluded that the rule and curfew has “zero effect” on the number of different households mixing, meaning that they are likely failing to slow the spread of the virus.

But areas under a local lockdown appeared to have reduced social contacts.

The paper concludes: “We determine that the ‘rule of six’ and encouraging people to work from home has seen the average person reduce contacts but these reductions are likely small.

“There was little suggestion that the 10pm closure has affected the number of contacts that participants make outside home, work and school.

“In contrast to national restrictions, there was a strong suggestion that local restrictions reduced the number of contacts individuals make outside of work and school, though again, this effect was small in comparison to the national lockdown.”

There has been national debate whether the 10pm curfew rule has proven to be effective in curbing the virus, or whether it has just caused further transmissions in the streets and economic harm.