This afternoon, the Prime Minister laid out to Parliament our roadmap to remove the COVID lockdown restrictions.
The success of the vaccination programme has allowed for dates to be set for a path out of lockdown. The Prime Minister has described this as a cautious approach guided by the data. He has said that before taking each of the four steps out of lockdown, the Government will review the latest data on the impact of the previous steps against four tests:
- The vaccine deployment programme continues successfully.
- Evidence shows vaccines are sufficiently effective in reducing hospitalisations and deaths in those vaccinated.
- Infection rates do not risk a surge in hospitalisations which would put unsustainable pressure on the NHS.
- The assessment of the risks is not fundamentally changed by new variants of concern.
STEP 1 - FROM MARCH 8TH 2021
- Schools and colleges will reopen for all students supported by twice weekly testing of all secondary school and college pupils.
- Recreation alongside exercise outdoors with one person from outside your household will be permitted. However, clinically extremely vulnerable people will be advised to shield until the end of March.
- Universities can return for practical teaching, courses requiring specialist facilities or onsite assessments. All others will continue to learn online with more information on when they can return by the end of the Easter holidays.
- Every care home resident will be able to have one named visitor to visit regularly. The visitor will have to take a rapid lateral flow test every time they visit, wear PPE and keep physical contact to a minimum.
From 29th March when children go on Easter holidays, but still part of Step 1:
- Rule of 6 or two households applies to meeting outdoors, including private gardens, with social distancing measures. No household mixing indoors.
- Outdoor sport and leisure facilities can reopen.
- Organised outdoor sport permitted.
- Outdoor parent and child groups, up to 15 people, can resume.
- Funerals can take place with 30 people.
- Wedding ceremonies can take place with 6 people.
STEP 2 - NO EARLIER THAN 12TH APRIL 2021 AND SUBJECT TO THE LATEST DATA
- Non-essential retail can reopen.
- Outdoor hospitality can reopen.
- Indoor leisure, including gyms, open for individual use or within household groups.
- Outdoor attractions such as zoos, theme parks and drive-in cinemas can reopen.
- Libraries and community centres can reopen.
- Domestic overnight stays will be permitted with members of your household only.
- Weddings and wedding receptions can take place with 15 people.
- Event pilots begin.
STEP 3 - NO EARLIER THAN 17TH MAY 2021 AND SUBJECT TO THE LATEST DATA
- Indoor hospitality can reopen.
- Indoor entertainment and attractions can reopen.
- 30 person outdoor limit socially.
- Rule of 6, or two households, meeting indoors will be allowed (subject to review).
- Organised indoor adult sport allowed.
- Theatres and concert halls can reopen.
- Sports stadium can reopen subject to capacity limits.
- Weddings and receptions can take place with 30 people.
- International travel can resume (subject to review).
STEP 4 - NO EARLIER THAN 21ST JUNE AND SUBJECT TO THE LATEST DATA
- No legal limit on social contact, with published accompanying guidance on how best to reduce the risk of transmission and protect ourselves and loved ones
- Reopen the remaining closed settings, including night-clubs, and enable large events such as theatre performances.
- Remove all limits on weddings and other life events.