What the latest easing of lockdown restrictions mean for North East businesses

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has confirmed Stage 3 in government’s roadmap out of lockdown can go ahead from Monday 17 May.

How does the latest step in lockdown easing affect businesses in the North East?

From Monday 17 May:

  • Indoor dining and hospitality in pubs, bars and cafes will reopen. Venues will no longer have to serve a substantial meal with alcoholic drinks; nor will there be a curfew.

Customers will have to order, eat and drink while seated. The Rule of 6 or 2 households will apply indoors. Groups of up to 30 will be able to meet outdoors.

  • Indoor entertainment venues, including museums and galleries, theatres, cinemas and children’s play areas can reopen.
  • The rest of the accommodation sector, including hotels, hostels and B&Bs, can reopen as overnight stays are permitted.
  • Indoor adult group sports and exercise classes can also restart.
  • Some overseas travel will also be permitted from 17 May. Government has introduced a red, amber and green list, with visitors from countries on the green list no longer required to quarantine on arrival back in the UK. Certain rules are still in place, including the need to carry out two negative COVID-19 tests.
  • The government will also allow some larger performances and sporting events in indoor venues with a capacity of 1,000 people or half-full (whichever is a lower number), and in outdoor venues with a capacity of 4,000 people or half-full (whichever is a lower number).

In the largest outdoor seated venues, where crowds can be spread out, up to 10,000 people will be able to attend (or a quarter-full, whichever is lower).

  • Up to 30 people will be able to attend weddings, receptions and wakes, as well as funerals. This limit will also apply to other types of significant life events including bar mitzvahs and christenings.
  • Before Step 4 begins on 21 June, the government will complete a review of social distancing and other long-term measures that have been put in place to cut transmission. This will inform decisions on the timing and circumstances under which the rules on 1 metre plus, the wearing of face coverings and other measures may be lifted.

People who can work from home should continue to do so until government has completed its review.

For further support and guidance for your business, visit the dedicated COVID-19 Toolkit on the North East Growth Hub.