Boris Johnson Sets Out UK’s Four-Step Lockdown Exit Plan: Cinemas Can Provisionally Re-Open May 17

Coronavirus - Mon Feb 22, 2021. Prime Minister Boris Johnson giving his speech to Parliament, in in the House of Commons, London, about setting out the road map for easing coronavirus restrictions across England. Picture date: Monday February 22, 2021. See PA story HEALTH Coronavirus. Photo credit should read: House of Commons/PA Wire URN:58236194 (Press Association via AP Images) AP

Boris Johnson has outlined his government’s plan for a four-stage exit from the UK’s national lockdown, which will see some sectors shuttered until at least June.

Cinemas are understood to sit in level 3 of today’s plan, which means they can open May 17 as things stand, likely with restrictions in place. UK cinemas have been shuttered since October.

Outdoor venues such as drive-in cinemas should be able to open earlier, on April 12.

The relaxing of restrictions will begin March 8 and, depending on infection rates, the country could return to a degree of normality by late June. Information on international travel will be detailed in the coming months.

The government is also considering the idea of “Covid status certificates,” which could see those who have been vaccinated given certificates that will allow restrictions to be lifted more safely. The idea of a “Covid passport” had been criticized as potentially discriminatory in the lead-up to today’s announcement.

The steps are as follows:

March 8: All schools re-open and some small relaxation of rules on different households meetings outdoors.

March 29: The “stay at home” order will be lifted and families can meet outdoors.

April 12: Non-essential shops and hairdressers can re-open, as can self-catering accommodation and public buildings such as libraries and museums. A number of outdoor venues, such as drive-in cinemas, could resume operations.

May 17: Most rules on outdoor social contact will be lifted, with a limit of 30 on gatherings. Pubs and restaurants will be able to serve customers indoors.

June 21: All limits on socializing will be lifted and businesses can re-open.

All of these dates and stipulations will be subject to change and further reviews.

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