UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has revealed his four-step plan to ease the UK out of the third national lockdown.
The PM outlined the plan to the House of Commons this afternoon, which will include four steps, with step one split into two parts.
Boris Johnson says his roadmap will “cautiously but irreversibly” ease restrictions in England.
Details of the four-step plan are as follows, with five weeks between each step (Mr Johnson will also hold a press conference at 7pm this evening):
Step one – Part 1 (from 8th March)
All schools will be opened, with outdoor after-school sports and activities allowed.
Meeting in public spaces such as a parks will be allowed between two people, not just for exercise. This means they would be allowed to sit down for a coffee, drink or picnic.
Step one – Part 2 (from 29th March)
Outdoor gatherings of either six people or two households will be allowed, including in private gardens.
Outdoor sports facilities, including tennis and basketball courts and open air swimming pools, will reopen and organised adult and children’s sport, such as grassroots football, will return.
The current ‘stay at home’ message will also be lifted from 29th March – although guidance recommends staying local, with overnight stays not permitted.
At each stage of lockdown easing the government will be guided ‘by the data, not dates’, whilst four conditions will need to be met:
1. The vaccine deployment programme continues successfully
2. Data shows vaccines are effectively reducing hospitalisations and deaths in people who are vaccinated
3. Infection rates do not risk a surge in hospitalisations and put pressure on the NHS
4. The risk assessment is not changed by new variants of concern
Step two (no earlier than 12th April)
The next step will be announced 7 days beforehand and, if all four conditions are met, will be on 12th April.
All non-essential retailers will reopen, including hair and nail salons. Indoors gyms and other leisure facilities will also be able to reopen.
England will also see the gradual reopening of pubs and restaurants outdoors, with no curfew and no need for alcohol to be accompanied by a meal.
Zoos, drive in cinema, theme parks, libraries and community centres will also be able to reopen.
Step three (no earlier than 17th May)
Step three will occur no earlier than 17th May to allow for a five-week gap after step two, and as long as the four conditions are met.
Restrictions on meeting people outdoors will be lifted, up to a limit of 30 people.
People will be permitted to meet friends and family indoors, although only 2 households can mix at any one time.
England will begin to reopen pubs and restaurants indoors, whilst cinemas, children’s play areas, hotels, B&B’s, theatres, concert halls and sports stadia (with limits depending on size of venue) also reopening.
Step four (no earlier than 21st June)
If all four conditions are met, Step four will come into place on 21st June.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has vowed to remove all legal limits on social contact, weddings and live events, reopening everything up to and including night clubs and theatre performances.