World News

The coronavirus restrictions that could be lifted in England as PM set to make announcement

The Prime Minister is set to outline a blueprint for relaxing measures in England on Monday, February 22 – the final details of which will be agreed at a meeting of the “Covid O” committee on Sunday.

The Prime Minister will then chair a meeting of his Cabinet on Monday, before announcing the plans to the Commons later that afternoon.

He is expected to lead a Downing Street press conference that evening alongside England’s chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty and scientific adviser Sir Patrick Vallance.

The PM is thought to be examining the latest data on the effectiveness of the vaccine this weekend, alongside most up-to-date figures on cases, deaths and people admitted to hospital.

Speaking on Wednesday Mr Johnson said it was “absolutely right” to take a “data not dates” approach to easing restrictions as he stressed the need to proceed “cautiously”, the Liverpool Echo reports.

Here we take a look at what the PM’s potential roadmap timeline could look like:

March

The first aim of Mr Johnson’s roadmap plan is to reopen schools on March 8.

There are suggestions secondary school students may return a week or two after primary school pupils.

The Daily Telegraph reported parents of secondary school pupils would be asked to test their children twice a week with rapid lateral flow tests under Government plans, while the Guardian said masks will be compulsory outside classroom bubbles in secondary schools if social distancing is not possible.

After the schools have reopened, it is understood ministers have contemplated allowing outdoor sports such as golf and tennis to start again.

April

If not reopened by the end of March, non-essential shops may be able to open their doors in early April.

Meanwhile, Wales said it will consider allowing its tourism industry to partially reopen in time for Easter if the country’s coronavirus situation continues to improve.

Self-contained accommodation including hotels and bed & breakfasts with room service, as well as caravans and lodges, will be considered for reopening following the next review of restrictions.

Media reports have suggested various reopening dates for hospitality in England, with optimistic suggestions varying from Easter weekend to May.

There are also reports that hairdressers and beauty salons will not open before April, and that two households will be able to meet outdoors by Easter (April 4).

May

The Daily Mail said pubs could open in May, while the Daily Telegraph said cases would need to sink to 1,000 per day before measures could be eased.

But Patrick Dardis, Young’s chief executive officer, told the PA news agency that there could be thousands of job losses if pub doors are kept shut until May.

He said: “Opening in May is not ideal, we would massively prefer April, but at least if that is announced we have clarity we can work with.

“If it is May, we need to be able to reopen with at least the same rules in place as July 4, so we have two households inside and rule of six outside.”

A group of senior Tory MPs have demanded ‘unrestricted’ weddings return by May 1.

The Covid Recovery Group (CRG) of lockdown-sceptical Tory MPs including the influential chairman of the 1922 committee of Tories Sir Graham Brady and former Cabinet minister Esther McVey, have called for Covid-safe weddings to resume from March 8 before permitting unrestricted ceremonies from May 1.

Summer

Bosses from leading UK airlines are calling on the Prime Minister to outline a recovery road map for the industry so they can plan for the summer.

The chief executives of British Airways, easyJet, Jet2.com, Loganair, Ryanair, Tui and Virgin Atlantic warned that without a clear indication of intent from the Government that aviation will restart in the coming months, the UK faces a year of limited connectivity to the rest of the world, and the economic recovery will be hampered.

They said that when the Prime Minister makes his announcement on the lockdown next week, a road map would be critical for airlines and consumers to help them plan for the summer and pave the way for the safe reopening of international travel.

Airlines also called for further economic support for UK aviation to stimulate and strengthen any recovery when it comes.

Tim Alderslade, chief executive of Airlines UK, said: “The Prime Minister needs to indicate the intent for international travel to reopen again this summer and provide much-needed reassurance that travel will be possible, helping to restore consumer confidence.

“We do not expect travel restrictions to be lifted tomorrow, but it is important that the country has a clear view on the plan for international travel as we emerge from lockdown.

“We expect every other domestic economic sector, from hospitality to retail to leisure, will have a road map announced – so must aviation.”

...

ALSO READ  San Francisco hair salons reopen after Nancy Pelosi's visit
Tags

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button
Close