Wearing a mask in shops and supermarkets is to become mandatory from July 24.

The Government is also expected to announce that those who fail to comply could face a fine of up to £100.

The move follows a weekend of confusion over whether ministers intended to make face coverings compulsory after Prime Minister Boris Johnson said they were looking at "stricter" rules.

The move will bring England into line with Scotland, where face coverings are already mandatory in shops.

Enforcement of the new 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.

A No 10 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 Prime Minister has been clear that people should be wearing face coverings in shops and we will make this mandatory from July 24."

The Government has been urging people to wear face coverings in confined spaces such as shops since early May and they have already been made compulsory on public transport in England since June 15.

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