Cheshire East Council outlines the move to step 3 on the roadmap of easing lockdown restrictions
Earlier this week, the Prime Minister confirmed that restrictions will continue to be eased in England from Monday 17 May.
Cheshire East Council thanks everyone for their efforts in adhering to the restrictions so far which, combined with the roll out of the vaccine programme, means that collectively, we have met the four tests for further easing the lockdown in England.
The council is working on implications for its services from Monday and is ensuring that people can still feel safe, despite the easing of restrictions and greater freedoms that many will welcome.
Dr Matt Tyrer, Director of Public Health for Cheshire East Council said: “As we progress through step 3 of the government’s roadmap out of lockdown, we must not forget how hard we’ve all worked, and the many sacrifices we’ve all made to get to this stage.”
As part of step 3 from Monday 17 May:
· You can socialise indoors in a group of up to six people or two households, including overnight stays;
· You can meet with up to 30 people outside;
· Indoor hospitality venues, such as restaurants, pubs, bars and cafes will reopen – though you will need to remain seated while eating and drinking;
· Indoor entertainment and attractions such as cinemas, theatres, concert halls, bowling alleys, casinos, amusement arcades, museums and children’s indoor play areas will be permitted to open with Covid-secure measures in place;
· You can attend indoor and outdoor events, including live performances, sporting events and business events. Attendance at these events will be capped according to venue type, and you should follow the Covid-secure measures set out by those venues;
· Organised indoor sport will be able to take place for all (this includes gym classes) and;
· All holiday accommodation in England will be open – such as hotels and B&Bs. These can be used by groups of up to six people or two households.
There are also changes for secondary school and higher education. Secondary school pupils will no longer have to wear face coverings in classrooms or communal areas and higher education students can access in-person teaching.
Care home residents will be allowed up to five named visitors (two at any one time) meaning that they will be able to see more of their relatives and friends. This is subject to visitors testing negative for Covid-19.
There are changes to the number of people allowed to attend a funeral. It will be determined by how many people the Covid-secure venue can safely accommodate with social distancing, with limits at other life events, such as weddings and wakes, increasing to 30 people.
There will no longer be a legal restriction to international travel. However, you must follow the rules when returning to England depending on whether you return from a red, amber or green list country.
Dr Matt Tyrer, went on to say: “I’d like to thank residents for their hard work in driving infection rates in Cheshire East down and thank all our volunteers who have worked tirelessly in supporting residents, through their work with the council and local NHS services.
“In Cheshire East there have been just 14 new cases per 100,000 recorded across in the latest seven days. This means that locally we are in a strong position to enter step 3 of the roadmap, however despite this we all must remain vigilant and work hard to not let this virus regain a stronghold in our borough.”
Cheshire East Council leader, Councillor Sam Corcoran said “We have a fully rounded locally-delivered service available to allow us to continue to fight this deadly virus, but we can’t do this alone – we need your continued help:
- Get tested regularly to identify any new cases;
- Work with our local contact tracing team if you test positive and;
- Self -isolate if needed - If you need help to stick to the rules of self-isolation, our local team will be there to support you.
“You can keep yourself, loved ones and other members of the public safe by wearing a face covering where necessary, making sure you sanitise their hands and maintaining social distancing. And there is less risk of spreading or catching the virus outside, in the open air.
“By working together, we stand the greatest chance of being able to keep Covid at bay – together we can do this, it’s in our hands.”
Cheshire East Council deputy leader, Councillor Craig Browne said “The latest easing of restrictions is great news for local businesses and recreation venues. They have been working extremely hard to prepare for their reopening, in line with the government’s Covid secure measures to keep residents as safe as possible.
“But residents also have a hugely important role to play. They can relieve some of the pressure facing local businesses, by being responsible and adhering to the measures the business has in place. These simple actions will reduce the risk of infection and possible enforcement action.”
Around one in three people who have Covid-19 do not have any symptoms so it’s important that residents get tested regularly to identify new cases. The council has a range of testing options for residents: via visiting a testing centre or to collect home-testing kits for asymptomatic tests, and several testing sites available for tests for those with symptoms. These can be found by visiting www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/covid-testing
Regular testing is still important for those people who have had their first, or even second dose of the Covid-19 vaccine as despite having higher immunity against the virus, you can still catch it and carry it to others.
For more advice and information follow the council’s social media pages, visit their Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/cheshireeastcouncil and Twitter at: @CheshireEast