On Monday morning, ministers will meet to discuss the next phase of lockdown easing. Boris Johnson will then address the nation in the afternoon to update citizens on what they will be allowed to do in a week’s time.
What will Boris say?
With coronavirus cases and hospitalisations falling and the vaccination programme proceeding steadily, Mr Johnson is expected to say the data supports moving on to the next phase in the roadmap out of lockdown with more restrictions eased.
This could include advising the public that it is ok to hug friends and family after Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove said No 10 wanted to see “friendly contact” between people restored.
Under the government’s plans for the next phase out of lockdown, people will be able to meet in groups of 30 outdoors.
Indoors, people will be able to mix in groups of six, or two households.
People are also expected to be able to stay overnight with people not in their household, opening up the option for summer holidays.
Pubs, restaurants and other hospitality venues such as cinemas and soft play areas are set to be permitted to reopen indoors.
The rest of the accommodation sector is to reopen, along with indoor group sports and exercise classes.
Foreign travel will also begin opening up, with the government announcing its ‘green’ travel list last week.
The government said the latest data suggested that easing restrictions from May 17 was unlikely to risk a resurgence in infections as infection rates are at their lowest since September 2020.
On Sunday, the UK recorded another two deaths within 28 days of a positive coronavirus test and a further 1,770 cases.
Mr Johnson said: “The data reflects what we already knew – we are not going to let this virus beat us.
“The road map remains on track, our successful vaccination programme continues – more than two-thirds of adults in the UK have now had the first vaccine – and we can now look forward to unlocking, cautiously but irreversibly.”