The Prime Minister Boris Johnson is holding a press conference at the moment (Friday 17 July) , at which he has announced:
- From today, 17 July, anyone can use public transport, although the government is encouraging consideration of alternative means of transport.
From 1 August:
- The government will issue updated guidance on people going to work. Employers will have more discretion as to whether employees continue to work from home or are brought back into the workplace safely.
- Leisure venues such as bowling and skating rinks can re-open providing they are Covid-safe. NB Nightclubs and soft play areas will need to remain closed at this stage.
- Close contact services involving the face can re-start.
- Indoor performances to live audiences may resume
- Wedding receptions for up to 30 people can take place.
- The hope is that audiences can return to stadia
From November (at the earliest):
- More relaxing of restrictions in respect of meeting friends and family from November at the earliest.
Return to socially distanced indoor performances
Further to my earlier email, I just wanted to confirm that audiences adhering to social distancing will be able to return to indoor theatres, music and performance venues from 1 August.
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport is working with the sector on pilots of performances with socially distanced audiences that will inform final guidance for venues in the run up to August 1. Under the new regime, audiences, performers and venues will be expected to maintain social distancing at all times.
Guidance for the performing arts, published earlier this month which can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/performing-arts also sets out further measures to support the safe return of audiences, including:
- Reduced venue capacity and limited ticket sales to ensure social distancing can be maintained
- Tickets will be purchased online and venues encouraged to use e-tickets to reduce contact and help with track and trace
- Venues should have clearly communicated social distancing marking in place in areas where queues form and adopt a limited entry approach
- Increased deep cleaning of auditoriums
- Performances should be scheduled to allow sufficient time to undertake deep cleaning before the next audience arrives
- Performers, conductors, musicians must observe social distancing wherever possible
The full media release can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/audiences-back-in-theatres-from-1-august?utm_source=3abbeef2-398d-4dbc-a032-cf477a4b6947&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate
Socially distanced spectators for sporting events
The Government has announced that a small number of sporting events will be used to pilot the safe return of spectators through late July and early August – with a view to reopen competition venues for sports fans, with social distancing measures in place, from October 2020. Full details can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/pilots-announced-for-return-of-spectators-to-elite-sports-events