After being in lockdown since the beginning of this year, a lot of us (if not all) are itching to get out of our homes. Well, fret no longer! From April 12th, in England, lockdown restrictions are beginning to ease in what Prime Minister Boris Johnson calls an ‘irreversible’ path out of lockdown. Which hopefully means we will never have to go back on it. The data, which takes into account the vaccination schedule, the R rate (rate of transmission), deaths, hospitalizations, and active cases, has suggested to the government that everything is going in the right direction. With the vaccinations as a shield, they believe we can withstand the blow of coming out of lockdown. But what can we actually do from April 12th?
That’s right. From Monday the 12th, we can go into Primark for a pair of tights, end come out in our overdrafts. We can finally go and bulk buy fluffy socks, bralettes, and not have to wait for them to be delivered. The rules still stay the same as before lockdown, and masks are compulsory for anyone who isn’t exempt. Likewise, social distancing will still be in place. But all non-essential retail, from clothes stores to your local vinyl store, will be able to open their doors to us once again.
Of course, for a lot of students, that means it’s back to work too!
The. Pubs. Are. Back.
Any pub or restaurant with outdoor spaces will be allowed to open from Monday 12th April. They can serve alcohol and food, without needing to worry about the ‘substantial meal’ rubbish like last time. Rules on social distancing apply, you will have to remain seated, and mask up when not, and you can only meet up to 6 people (or 2 households) for a pint – but we’ll take anything at this point.
You can finally stop trying to give yourself a fade at home, as from the 12th April, hairdressers and other self-care businesses can open. Again, masks will be required, but you can go and get your nails, hair, eyebrows, and even tattoos done. Although there’s no guarantee that your hairdresser won’t giggle at your attempt at a lockdown trim!
If you’re looking for things to do, as of the 12th, zoos and theme parks are allowed to open once again. So we can go and get our fill of thrills at places like Thorpe Park and Alton Towers, or take a trip to safari parks like Longleat. In fact, you can even go and have a wander around your local botanical garden. Suddenly, life isn’t so boring!
If you have tried every walking route and hiking path nearby, you’ll be pleased to hear that indoor exercise venues will be able to open. This includes gyms, yoga centres, etc. Social distancing must be maintained at all times, and you can only go with your bubble or household, but if you’ve been missing the treadmill, you won’t have to wait much longer.
From the 12th, the bookworms amongst us can go and enjoy their local libraries. They will be opening their doors to us again, but will also require social distancing and masks. Not that you particularly need to get very close to anyone whilst finding your next read. Community centres will also be allowed to open.
Domestic self-catered holiday
Those desperate for vacations will be thrilled to know that you can go to a cottage, campsite or caravan from the 12th. As long as its self-catering, with your household or bubble, and has no shared facilities, you can go and stay away. Just make sure you abide by the rules whilst there! Unfortunately, at the moment, we are unable to visit our friends in Scotland, who are following a different set of rules.
For anyone who has unfortunately lost someone, funerals are permitted to have 30 mourners. Weddings can have 15 guests, as can other commemorative events.
Hopefully, this is a step in the direction that takes us back to normal life. Everyone has worked so hard to stay strong this last year and a bit, and we all deserve a pat on the back (and a cheeky pint!).