PM's Roadmap: Step Two for Zoo & Library Reopening

  • The Prime Minister has set out on 22 February his roadmap for reopening businesses in the UK.

  • Step One

    The Prime Minister told the House of Commons, “Step one will happen from 8 March ... pupils and students in all schools and further education settings can safely return to face-to-face teaching, supported by twice-weekly testing of secondary school and college pupils ... people will also be able to meet one person from outside their household for outdoor recreation... we are advising the clinically extremely vulnerable to shield at least until the end of March.

    “... on 29 March, ... it will become possible to meet in limited numbers outdoors... so the rule of six will return outdoors, including in private gardens, and outdoor meetings of two households will also be permitted ... Outdoor sports facilities, such as tennis and basketball courts and open-air swimming pools, will be able to reopen, and formally organised outdoor sports will resume, subject to guidance. From this point, 29 March, people will no longer be legally required to stay at home, but many lockdown restrictions will remain. People should continue to work from home where they can and minimise all travel wherever possible.

    Step Two

    Step two will begin at least five weeks after the beginning of step one and no earlier than 12 April, with an announcement at least seven days in advance. If analysis of the latest data against the four tests requires a delay, then this and subsequent steps will also be delayed, to maintain the five-week gap.

    “In step two, non-essential retail will reopen, as will personal care, including hairdressers... and nail salons. Indoor leisure facilities such as gyms will reopen, as will holiday lets, but only for use by individuals or household groups. We will begin to reopen our pubs and restaurants outdoors... [and] there will be no requirement for alcohol to be accompanied by a substantial meal. Zoos, theme parks and drive-in cinemas will reopen, as will public libraries and community centres.

    Step Three

    “Step three will begin no earlier than 17 May. Provided that the data satisfies the four tests, most restrictions on meetings outdoors will be lifted, subject to a limit of 30, and this is the point when you will be able to see your friends and family indoors, subject to the rule of six or the meeting of two households. We will also reopen pubs and restaurants indoors, along with cinemas and children’s play areas, hotels, hostels, and bed and breakfasts. Theatres and concert halls will reopen their doors, and the turnstiles of our sports stadiums will once again rotate, subject in all cases to capacity limits depending on the size of the venue. We will pilot larger events using enhanced testing, with the ambition of further easing restrictions in the next step.

    Step Four

    “Step four will begin no earlier than 21 June. With appropriate mitigations, we will aim to remove all legal limits on social contact and on weddings and other life events. We will reopen everything up to and including nightclubs, and enable large events such as theatre performances above the limits of step three, potentially using testing to reduce the risk of infection.”

    Local MP

    Local MP, Andrew Selous welcomed the news about Zoos reopening, “Thank you very much on behalf of Whipsnade Zoo, but will the Prime Minister now instruct that a further test case be taken to the courts so that those hospitality businesses whose business interruption insurance is still not paying out can get the relief that they need, having paid thousands in premiums, for decades in some cases?”

    Boris Johnson responded, “I do hope that the businesses concerned receive the compensation that they are owed and deserve from their insurance packages, but in the meantime I urge my hon. Friend to look out for what the Chancellor is going to say next week about continued support.”