Everything we know about Boris Johnson’s plans to ease lockdown in England from March
28 January 2021, 07:07 | Updated: 28 January 2021, 07:25
The Prime Minister has confirmed that schools will not reopen until at least March 8.
Boris Johnson announced on Wednesday that there were no plans to begin easing lockdown restrictions in England for another six weeks.
The Prime Minister told the Commons that schools would remain closed until at least March 8, with any other changes to social distancing rules looking unlikely before then.
While the government has remained silent on when things could start to return to normal, Mr Johnson said he will be reviewing the restrictions on February 22.
Schools will not reopen until at least March 8, free school meals extended
So what do we know about the return of schools, shops and hospitality later this year?
When will schools reopen?
The government is currently on track to have vaccinated all the people in the four most vulnerable groups by February 15.
With the vaccine taking three weeks to kick in, this takes us to March 8, where Mr Johnson said we could start looking at getting children back to school.
February 15 is also the start of the week which will see the Government review the effectiveness of lockdown.
The PM explained: "If we achieve our target of vaccinating everyone in the four most vulnerable groups with their first dose by February 15, and every passing day sees more progress towards that goal, then those groups (will) have developed immunity from the virus about three-weeks later, that is by March 8.
"We hope it will therefore be safe to begin the reopening of schools from Monday, March 8.
"With other economic and social restrictions being removed thereafter as and when the data permits... then or thereafter I should say.
"That plan will, of course, depend on the continued success of our vaccination programme, the capacity of the NHS, and on deaths falling at the pace we would expect as more people are inoculated."
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When will non-essential shops, pubs and restaurants reopen?
Along with an update on schools, Boris Johnson also announced the phased route out of lockdown.
According to The Telegraph, officials are planning to reopen shops from April, while pubs and restaurants could open their doors again in May.
The publication has also suggested there will be a return to the Tier system which was in place before Christmas, where lockdown restrictions would be dependent on the infection rate in your area.
However, the PM has refused to rule out another extension of the current lockdown.
He said: "I can tell the House that when parliament returns from recess on the week beginning February 22, we intend to set out the results of that review and publish our plan for taking the country out of lockdown.”
The plan will all be based on the success of the vaccine rollout, a drop in NHS admissions and falling Covid cases and deaths.