The Prime Minister has announced his plans on easing the lockdown but has said it is not over.
From Wednesday people within England will be able to go outdoors as much as they like.
Saying “You can sit in the sun in your local park, you can drive to other destinations, you can even play sports but only with members of your own household.”
Boris has now allowed everyone who cannot work from home saying they “should go to work” from Monday, but should avoid using public transport where possible”.
Schools should plan to re-open from June 1st at the earliest with reception, year one and year since returning first.
Shops that are currently closed should look at opening their doors at the same time.
But Cafes, Pubs & Restaurants cannot begin opening until July at the earliest however they must “enforce social distancing”.
Boris Johnson said that his announcement to the nation did not mark the end of the coronavirus lockdown.
He said: “No, this is not the time simply to end the lockdown this week.
“Instead we are taking the first careful steps to modify our measures.”
He will now increase fines to people who are breaking the social distancing rules.
He set out the new Government slogan which urged people to “stay alert” to control the virus and save lives. It’s a change from the Government’s previous slogan, which instructed peole to “stay home”.
He said there would be a “Covid Alert System”, highlighting how quickly Covid-19 is spreading, with five levels. Level One means the disease is no longer present in the UK and Level Five is the most critical – and the UK is currently at level three, he said.
Mr Johnson confirmed that the effect of changes to the lockdown will be closely monitored at a local, regional and national level, so that local or regional restrctions can be imposed if required. He said: “We will be monitoring our progress locally, regionally, and nationally and if there are outbreaks, if there are problems, we will not hesitate to put on the brakes.”
Changes which will come into force from Wednesday including allowing people to spend “unlimited” time outdoors for leisure purposes, as long as they are socially distanced from others.
Mr Johnson said: “From this Wednesday we want to encourage people to take more and even unlimited amounts of outdoor exercise.”
But people will still be required to obey rules on social distancing by staying away from people who are not members of their household, he said.
“You must obey the rules on social distancing and to enforce those rules we will increase the fines for the small minority who break them.”
It’s a change from the current rules, which required to people to stay at home except for essential journeys or one form of exercise a day.
The Prime Minister also encouraged people to go back to work. The lockdown rules have always allowed people to go to workplaces such as factories, construction sites and offices if they cannot work from home, but it appears some have stayed away anyway.
Mr Johnson said that from tomorrow (Monday), “anyone who can’t work from home, for instance those in construction and manufacturing, should be actively encouraged to go to work.
“And we want it to be safe for you to get to work. So you should avoid public transport if at all possible, because we must and will maintain social distancing, and capacity will therefore be limited.
“So work from home if you can, but you should go to work if you can’t work from home.”
Schools and shops could re-open in the months to come, but only if the rate of infection – known as R – remains low.
Mr Johnson said: “Every day, with ever increasing data, we will be monitoring the R and the number of new infections, and the progress we are making, and if we as a nation begin to fulfil the conditions I have set out, then in the next few weeks and months we may be able to go further.
“In step two – at the earliest by June 1 – after half term – we believe we may be in a position to begin the phased reopening of shops and to get primary pupils back into schools, in stages, beginning with reception, Year 1 and Year 6.
“Our ambition is that secondary pupils facing exams next year will get at least some time with their teachers before the holidays. And we will shortly be setting out detailed guidance on how to make it work in schools and shops and on transport.
“And step three – at the earliest by July – and subject to all these conditions and further scientific advice; if and only if the numbers support it, we will hope to re-open at least some of the hospitality industry and other public places, provided they are safe and enforce social distancing.”
There was no opportunity for journalists to question the Prime Minister. But he said he would take questions from members of the public tomorrow.
Mr Johnson thanked the public for obeying lockdown rules so far. He said: “Though the death toll has been tragic, and the suffering immense.
“And though we grieve for all those we have lost. It is a fact that by adopting those measures we prevented this country from being engulfed by what could have been a catastrophe in which the reasonable worst case scenario was half a million fatalities.”
He added: ‘It would be madness now to throw away that achievement by allowing a second spike.
“We must stay alert. We must continue to control the virus and save lives.”
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