Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced that the Government expects to be able to lift almost all coronavirus-related restrictions on 19 July, but has warned the “pandemic is far from over”.
It is expected to be confirmed next week that lockdown measures will be lifted on 19 July – with the Government hoping to make the following changes;
- Under 40s to be given vaccine doses eight weeks apart (instead of 12 weeks apart)
- All remaining businesses, including nightclubs, to be allowed to reopen
- All limits on social contact to be lifted, meaning any number of people can meet indoors and outdoors
- Legal requirements for the wearing of face masks and exercising of social distancing to be ended
- Government guidance for people to work from home will be removed
- Fully vaccinated people will no longer have to self-isolate if a close contact tests positive for the virus
Some rules will remain in place, including around the red travel list, and those that contract COVID-19 or are contacted by Test and Trace will still need to isolate.
It was warned at the Downing Street briefing that there may be as many as 50,000 new cases of the virus a day by 19 July, though the Prime Minister said that the country could learn to live with the virus as a result of the country’s vaccination programme.