Most of England’s COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, including mask-wearing and social distancing, were lifted as of midnight on July 19, as part of the government’s roadmap out of lockdown.
“But we’ve got to do it cautiously. We’ve got to remember that this virus is sadly still out there. Cases are rising, we can see the extreme contagiousness of the Delta variant,” Johnson said.
However, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will not be reopening with the same changes as England, according to official sources.
Scientists, experts, healthcare workers and politicians raised concerns regarding the move as the UK continues to see a rise in cases despite having one of the world’s highest vaccination rates, according to Reuters.
What’s changing in England on July 19 July
- No limits on gatherings and removal of 1m-plus social distancing
- Face coverings no longer required by law and nightclubs can reopen
- No limits on guests at weddings, funerals, concerts, theatres, sporting events and religious events
- Pubs and restaurants will no longer be restricted to table service
- Removal of limitations on care home visitation
- Removal of self-isolation for fully vaccinated adults who come into contact with a positive case
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has asked Transport for London network to keep the face coverings requirement on public transport as a condition of travel on all services after July 19 despite the lifting of restrictions.
Restrictions in Northern Ireland will be eased further on July 26, if approved at a review on July 22.