The Prime Minister announced some changes to lockdown easing measures in a briefing with Professor Chris Whitty on Friday 31st July. In response to increasing transmission of COVID-19 in England, the following measures are being put in place:
- the lifting of restrictions that should have taken place on Saturday 1st August will be paused – bowling alleys, ice rinks and casinos will remain closed until at least 15 August
- indoor performances will not resume and pilots of larger crowds in sports venues and conference centres will not take place
- face coverings will be required in additional venues such as museums, galleries and places of worship from 8 August.
Full details are in the speech – https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/prime-ministers-statement-on-coronavirus-covid-19-31-july-2020
The ‘national pause on shielding’ will go ahead as planned. The government is not changing the rules on social contact nationally but warns that unless people follow the rules further restrictions could be applied.
These changes are prompted by the weekly survey by the Office for National Statistics which reports that the prevalence of the virus in the community in England is likely to be rising for the first time since May.
Around one in 1,500 now have the virus, compared to one in 1,800 on 15 July and one in 2,000 on 2 July. The ONS also estimates there are now 4,900 new infections every day, up from around 3,000 per day on 14 July and 2,000 per day at the end of June.
Interim Democratic Services Manager