BORIS Johnson is set to confirm the easing of Britain’s lockdown today – if the five tests are finally met.
The Prime Minister and his top team will get expert advice from the Government’s scientists today to check if it’s safe to start easing the measures.
And at tonight’s 5pm coronavirus press conference it’s expected to be confirmed that schools will open from June 1, along with outdoor markets and car showrooms.
There may even be more news on when Britain can start meeting family and friends again.
At the moment only two people can meet up outside, but HOAR revealed this week two households will be able to have BBQs and garden parties in the coming weeks.
The PM wants to slowly get Britain back to normal over the next two months – but as long as everyone can still remain a safe distance apart.
Today is the date of the three-week review period, where ministers have to by law look again at the coronavirus laws.
Matt Hancock said today on the idea that people may be able to meet up with family soon: “I hope we will be able to make some further progress but I don’t want to prejudge the formal decision we are taking late today on that.
“Today I have to formally review the rules on lockdown, you will be hearing later about that.”
It came as:
- The nation’s test and trace system went live across England, but was shrouded in shambles and IT issues from the start
- Cineworld and Odeon say they will open from July
- Matt Hancock this morning lifted hopes of a summer holiday this year, as he said he wouldn’t rule out being able to jet abroad from July
And he urged Brits to be aware that many of the changes will likely be to things the public can do outside, dashing hopes for many of staying with family in the coming weeks.
He said this morning: “The good thing we have learned from the science is the risk of transmission outdoors is much lower than indoors.
“During the summer in particular a lot of changes you can expect to see [involve the fact] that outdoors is safer than indoors.”
Earlier this week the Health Secretary suggested that four out of five lockdown tests had been met – thanks to a huge PPE deal.
The Health Secretary said that “significant progress” has been made on securing enough vital equipment to help keep Brits protected on the front line in hospitals and care homes.
Boris confirmed that three of them have passed earlier this month.
The news comes as England’s test and trace system comes into force today.
It means anyone who gets symptoms will be told to take a test and self-isolate at home.
They will then be asked to hand over details of everyone they have been in close contact with in the last 48 hours.
Those people will then be ordered to stay home for 14 days to make sure they don’t pass on the virus.
Close contact is defined as within two metres for at least 15 minutes.
But already the scheme is off to a shambolic start – with tracers saying they were only told the system was going live last night.
Tracers have said it is “the blind leading the blind” and they don’t have anyone who tested positive for coronavirus to call so they can get to work.
A huge number said they had not been sent login details which allowed them to access systems to start work and were instead sat at home with nothing to do.
Boris Johnson has hailed the scheme as they key to starting to lift lockdown measures for the rest of the country.
But it’s not set to become fully operational for weeks to come.
If all goes well and the rate of transmission stays low, here’s what’s expected to be confirmed in the coming days and weeks.
June 1 – schools start to reopen to more pupils
The PM confirmed on Sunday that his plans for schools to open for reception, year one and year six will go ahead as planned if the R number has stayed below one.
And he said returning kids to their classrooms is crucial for their “health, welfare and long-term future”.