Bars, restaurants and cafés with outdoor spaces in Wales should prepare to begin a phased reopening from 13 July, International Relations Minister Eluned Morgan has confirmed.
The announcement comes following a review of the hospitality sector in Wales, looking at how it may be able to safely reopen as other Coronavirus restrictions in the country are eased. A final decision about the re-openings is set to be made at the next review of Coronavirus regulations in Wales on 9 July and the outcome of the decision will depend on whether the rates of COVID-19 in the country are continuing to fall.
The current proposed timeline for the reopening of the tourism and hospitality industry in Wales is as follows;
- 06 July 2020 – Lifting of the requirement to ‘stay local’ and outdoor visitor attractions allowed to open
- 11 July 2020 – Reopening of self-contained holiday accommodation (brought forward from 13 July)
- 13 July 2020 – Reopening of hospitality sector, bars, restaurants and cafes with licenced outdoor spaces
Each of the steps to ease restrictions are subject to the continued fall of COVID-19 cases in Wales and strict social distancing and hygiene measures being followed.
The Welsh Government has said that decisions about the re-opening of indoor spaces will not be made until a later date and that decisions will depend on the success of the first phase of outdoor reopenings.
Speaking on Thursday, Ms Morgan said;
“Tourism is a vital part of the Welsh economy at a national, regional and local level. I’d like to thank all our industry partners for working with us to carefully reopen the visitor economy.
“A successful, safe and phased return will give businesses, communities and visitors confidence to continue with the recovery of the visitor economy.
“We ask everyone who travels to and around Wales to enjoy their time here, but always to respect local communities. We are looking forward to welcoming visitors back to Wales – but we want everyone to Visit Wales Safely.”
Guidelines have been released by the Welsh Government to help the hospitality industry to prepare for reopenings.
Speaking at the Welsh Government Press Conference on Thursday, Ms Morgan said that there were no immediate plans to change the 2m social distancing rule in Wales for the hospitality sector, as has been done in other parts of the UK.