These are all the changes to England's coronavirus guidelines due on August 1
The UK Government is continuing to ease Covid-19 restrictions on social contact in line with its ‘safe, cautious and consistent’ plan to stop the spread of the virus and embrace the ‘new normal’.
And following on from last week’s reopening of gyms, indoor swimming pools and other sports facilities for the first time since March, this weekend is set to see the latest batch of changes rolled out – subject to the latest transmission rates of coronavirus.
Announced by Prime Minister Boris Johnson earlier this month, these changes include the end of England’s national shielding programme for those seen to be extremely vulnerable to Covid-19, the opening of bowling alleys and casinos and a wider return to the workplace for those who have been at home.
Here we look at how the guidelines are expected to change from August 1, the Government’s advice on seeing loved ones and the safety rules which should be followed at all times.
The changes due to take place in England from Saturday, August 1:
*Employers can consult with staff on returning to the workplace, where Covid-secure guidelines are met
*Those classed as ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’ who have been shielding will no longer have to follow this specific guidance programme – but must obey strict social distancing when meeting others
*Bowling alleys, skating rinks and casinos can reopen to customers
*Conference and exhibition centres can reopen for business events
*Small wedding receptions – a sit-down meal for no more than 30 people – can take place
*Close-contact services – including facial treatments and make-up – can resume
*Indoor performances to a live audience will be allowed under Covid-secure guidelines, if successful pilots have taken place
*Further pilots of larger events – like business conferences – will be permitted in sports stadia and other venues
How to meet family and friends safely:
*Maintain social distancing with people who do not live with you – both indoors and outdoors
*Only have close contact with those in your household or support bubble
*You can only socialise indoors with members of up to two households, including when dining out or visiting a pub
*Only socialise outdoors in a group of up to six people from different households. Larger groups are permitted if everyone is exclusively from one or two households
*Businesses and venues can only be visited in groups of up to two households. A group of six people from different households can visit outdoor venues or businesses
*Limit the number of people you see socially to keep both yourself and them safe
*Provide your contact details to a business or venue when asked so you can be contacted by the NHS Test and Trace programme as needed
The rules you must always follow to minimise the risk of spreading the virus:
*Stay two metres – three steps – away from anyone you do not live with or ‘one-metre plus’ where this is not possible
*Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use sanitiser if soap and water are not available
*Wash your hands as soon as you get home
*Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough and sneeze and wash or sanitise your hands immediately afterwards