Hugs and Pints Possible but Virus Variant Apprehension Remains

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Indoor cafes open again: Marks and Spencer, Hampshire
Indoor cafes open again: Marks and Spencer, Hampshire

New Rules

England’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson repeated his plea to everyone in the United Kingdom to use a “heavy dose of caution” when making personal judgements about gathering with friends and family again, as groups of 6 people or 2 households can now meet indoors.

Yesterday marked a significant lifting in restrictions in England with similar but slightly different rules applying to Scotlnd and Wales.

Step 3 in the government’s roadmap means long awaited meet ups can happen whatever the weather as indoor hospitality reopens.

Socialising and dining indoors is now possible in limited numbers

Exercise classes and concerts for up to 1000 people will bring joy for music and comedy lovers.

Engaged couples are finally permitted to hold weddings for up to 30 guests and the same number of invites is allowed for Christenings and funerals.

Foreign travel is allowed again but with some additional measures and restrictions. Extra Covid-19 testing and a traffic light system to define where we can travel this week.

“People can now meet indoors in groups of up to six or two households, or in groups of up to 30 outdoors. Overnight stays are allowed” (1)

Care home visits can involve up to 5 people including indoors

“Museums, cinemas, children’s play areas, theatres, concert halls and sports stadiums can all reopen, as can hotels” and bed and breakfast businesses. (1)

University students can receive traditional tuition face to face once again.

The NHS app (separate from NHS Covid-19 app) enables travellers to prove they have had the vaccine announced the Secretary of State for Transport Grant Schapps yesterday (4)

Advice is to proceed with caution

Frequent hand washing protocol is still super important despite the success of the vaccine rollout.

The risk of contracting and passing on Covid-19 continues particularly as the more transmissible Indian Variant continues to spread through major cities in England.

Face masks are still essential in public places unless seated at a dining table.

Scientific experts advise it is wise to continue to meet outdoors whenever possible.

They added that good ventilation is key if assembling in any interior rooms and spaces.

Most citizens we have spoken to are using a common sense approach and choosing quality not quantity when it comes to organising their social diaries this month.

The next and final lifting of restrictions is due on the 21st of June if all the government’s tests are met. Westminster’s criteria includes the continuation of the vaccine rollout and the current vaccines keeping pace with any new variants that may develop in the UK.

(1) ‘Covid-19: Lockdowns ease in England, Wales and most of Scotland’ Francesca Gillett and Alex Kleiderman, BBC News 17 May 2021 ‘Covid-19: Lockdowns ease in England, Wales and most of Scotland’ Gillett and Kleiderman, BBC News

(2) ‘COVID-19: Lockdown roadmap dates – what’s opening when, and what’s allowed with how many people?’ Alix Culbertson, Sky News 10 May 2021 ‘COVID-19: Lockdown roadmap dates – what’s opening when, and what’s allowed with how many people?’ Alix Culbertson, Sky News

(3) ‘Covid lockdown roadmap: what you can and can’t do as restrictions ease’ Ben Riley-Smith, Political Editor and Dan McGrath, The Telegraph, 18 May 2021 ‘Covid lockdown roadmap: what you can and can’t do as restrictions ease’ Ben Riley-Smith, Political Editor and Dan McGrath, The Telegraph

(4) NHS App – Download Page, National Health Service website NHS App – Download on the App Store or Google Play, National Health Service