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COVID rules changing from today (12 April)

Posted on: 12 April 2021

From today (12 April) lockdown rules in England are easing as part of the Prime Minister's road map. You will now be able to:

From today, 12 April 2021:

  • Meeting outdoors is allowed in groups of six or up to two households, outside only.
  • All shops will reopen including services such as hairdressers and beauty salons.
  • Restaurants, bars, and pubs can serve food and alcohol to customers outdoors only.
  • Weddings can take place with up to 15 people in attendance, funerals with up to 30 people, and wakes with up to 15 people.
  • Members of the same household can take a holiday in England in self-contained accommodation.
  • Children can attend any indoor children's activity.
  • Care home residents can have two visitors each.
  • Gyms, libraries, and community centres will reopen.

Remember, continue to shop safe and shop local. Stay outside when meeting others – fresh air reduces the risk of passing COVID-19 on.

The government continues to review cases of COVID-19 and any new variants of the virus. Each stage of the roadmap will consider these to ensure the safe lifting of restrictions.

From 17 May 2021:

  • People can meet in groups of up to 30 outdoors.
  • Six people or two households can meet indoors, with domestic overnight stays permitted.
  • Restaurants, bars, and pubs can serve food and alcohol to customers indoors.
  • Up to 30 people can attend weddings or other life events, like christenings.
  • Outdoor entertainment, such as outdoor theatres and cinemas can open.
  • Indoor entertainment such as museums, theatres, and children's play areas can open.
  • Performances and large events can restart, but there will be limits on audience numbers.
  • Hotels, hostels, and B&Bs can reopen.
  • Adult indoor group sports and exercise classes can restart.

Please check with your local place of worship for the latest advice.

Click here to watch a video explaining each stage of the government's road map.

The video is available in Urdu, Punjabi, Tamil, Sylhetiand Gujarati also available via BBC Asian Network.

For more information about Coronavirus restrictions: what you can and cannot do click here


Mayor of Tower Hamlets John Biggs said: "Today, we are more hopeful than ever; more people are being vaccinated against COVID-19 every day (over 82,196 in Tower Hamlets) and step two of the Government's roadmap out of lockdown begins, with further restrictions being lifted across the whole of England. This staggered lifting of restrictions requires four tests on vaccines, infection rates, and new coronavirus variants to be met at each stage. 

From today yet more of the restrictions we have lived under are being lifted. That is a big relief to many of us and something to savour and celebrate (especially those in need of a haircut!). With shops and some outdoor hospitality reopening, the world is beginning to return to normality. However, we should be in no doubt that the coming months will continue to challenge us, and COVID-19 will remain among us.

It is crucial that we remain cautious and all continue to play our part in stopping the spread of the virus. We can get through this together by continuing to adhere to the restrictions, moving through each step of the roadmap safely, taking up the offer of vaccination when it's our turn, and getting tested."