Boris Johnson reveals we're on track to scrap one-metre social distancing rule NEXT MONTH
BRITS could see the end of keeping a metre away from each other from June 21.
Boris Johnson hinted the "one-metre plus" rule could be scrapped next month – if the data continues to look good.
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In the biggest unlocking yet, the PM promised indoor pints, hugs and holidays will finally be back on in England from May 17 – taking Brits closer to post-Covid freedom.
For now, hugging and close contact indoors must remain within small groups of family and friends.
But he told the nation we could see the back of keeping our distance with colleagues and people out and about next month.
He told the nation this evening: "I think it's very important that we should proceed cautiously but as I said many times now hopefully irreversibly.
"The secret of the success that we have had so far is that we have been guided by the data and we've given time to see the effect of each stage of the roadmap.
"We may be able to lift the one metre rule."
The lockdown lifting rules confirmed tonight include:
- Rules for pubs and restaurants will be relaxed so people can meet up to six inside, and 30 outside
- Holidays will be legal again – and the £5,000 fines will be dropped
- Hugging between friends and family will be given the nod, as social distancing rules are expected to be relaxed
- Hotels, cinemas, indoor play areas and other attractions are allowed to reopen finally
- But strict pub rules will remain including table service, social distancing and checking in via the NHS app
- Schoolkids will no longer have to wear masks in class
- But weddings will still have a 30 person cap, despite funerals having their rules lifted
- The casual sex ban will finally be over as Brits can get close again, and stay over at each other's homes
- Organised adult sport and exercise classes can resume indoors and saunas and steam rooms can reopen
- Working from home should continue if people can
- Sports events can allow up to 10,000 fans in easing of rules in stadiums
The PM said: "This unlocking amounts to a very considerable step on the road back to normality and I'm confident we will be able to go further.
"Subject to the impact of Step 3 on the data we remain on track to move to step 4 on June 21."
He added that ministers would flesh out "what the world after June 21 would look like" soon, including social distancing and vaccine passports.
But despite his optimism, Mr Johnson shut down speculation he could accelerate the roadmap.
England's chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty said the four tests had been met which enabled the next stage of lockdown easing to proceed.
He cautioned that it remains important to move forward "carefully and steadily".
Speaking about coronavirus variants, he said the variant first detected in India is one "we need to keep quite a close eye on".
Last week the PM said there was a “good chance” the metre rule will be gone in time for summer.
Speaking on the campaign trail in Hartlepool before his party's victory, the PM said: “But it also looks to me as though June 21, we’ll be able to say social distancing as we currently have to do it, the one metre plus, I think we have got a good chance of being able to dispense with the one metre plus from June 21.”
Today he said people should continue to follow social distancing rules when not with family and friends.
He said: "We only have to look at the very sad situation in other countries to see the lethal potential of this virus and we must continue to fight the spread of variants here in the UK.
"While we have no evidence yet to believe these variants are completely vaccine resistant, we must remain vigilant."
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