Lockdown easing: Everything you can now do in England as rules change


The second phase of England’s roadmap out of lockdown has begun, with non-essential retail and some parts of hospitality flinging their doors open to welcome the public back from Monday 12 April.

However, rules around social mixing remain in place and the prime minister urged the nation to “behave responsibly” as we take new steps towards normality.

Boris Johnson said ahead of Monday’s restrictions easing: “I’m sure it will be a huge relief for those business owners who have been closed for so long and for everyone else it’s a chance to get back to doing some of the thins we love and have missed.

“I urge everyone to continue to behave responsibly and remember ‘hands, face, space and fresh air’ to suppress Covid as we push on with our vaccination programme.”

The country enters a new phase of the roadmap as more than 7 million people received their second dose of a Covid vaccine, which means 7,466,540 Britons are now fully vaccinated against the virus.

In total, 39,587,893 vaccinations have been administered across the UK. Of that figure, 32,121,353 are first doses.

Here are all the things you can look forward to doing from today:

Pubs and restaurants

Outdoor hospitality venues, such as pub gardens and restaurants with outdoor dining are allowed to reopen from Monday 12 April.

The previous 10pm curfew rule and requirement to order a substantial meal with a drink will no longer apply, but rules around social distancing must be abided by.

Customers visiting such venues must remain seated outside and cannot order at the bar. Some pubs will continue using apps to allow customers to order food and drink from their table, just as they did last summer.

Hairdressers, beauty treatments and nail salons

Personal care services such as hairdressers, barbers, beauty and nail salons have been closed since the third national lockdown was announced in January.

But from today, they can welcome customers back for treatments and haircuts after months without a trim.

Customers and staff must wear face masks when inside salons, and hair and beauty practitioners have been told to ensure they are socially distanced from clients when masks are removed to consume drinks.

Non-essential retail

Retail shops that have been deemed non-essential throughout lockdown can receive customers again.

Long queues have already been seen on high streets across England, with many people waiting outside stores before they open to carry out their shopping.

Gyms and swimming pools

People can resume going to indoor gyms and swimming pools from today, under stage two of England’s roadmap out of lockdown.

Leisure centres have seen a huge surge in bookings for swimming pool use, with many booked out for the next few weeks.

Climbing wall centres, sports courts, and dance studios are also permitted to reopen for individual exercise with one household or support bubble.

However, it is still against the rules to meet someone who is from another household for an indoor workout, and exercise classes remain banned to reduce contact between people in a closed setting.

Workout facilities must comply with Covid-secure measures such as regular cleaning and ensuring social distancing can be followed.

Outdoor attractions

Most outdoor attractions, such as zoos, drive-in cinemas and theme parks, can also reopen from today.

Public buildings, such as community halls and centres, and libraries, can also welcome people back.

Indoor events or gatherings remain banned, but according to government guidelines, some outdoor events can be organised by businesses, charities or public bodies as log as they comply with Covid-secure guidance.

Holidays

With the “stay at home” order lifted across England, and border restrictions with Wales eased to allow travel in and out of Wales once again, holidays within parts of the UK are in reach once more.

Only self-contained holiday accommodations may reopen, and can only be used by a single household of support bubble.

Any accommodations with shared facilities, including indoor communal areas such as lounges and sitting areas, are still not permitted to reopen.

International travel is still banned until at least 17 May.

Weddings and funerals

Wedding ceremonies and civil partnerships, funerals and wakes can now take place indoors as long as social distancing is applied.

A maximum of 15 guests will be allowed at weddings and wedding receptions, whereas funerals can continue with up to 30 guests.



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