The new rules on seeing family and friends in Wales

29 May 2020, 12:50 | Updated: 29 May 2020, 13:27

Seeing family and friends in Wales
Seeing family and friends in Wales. Picture: Global

Wales' First Minister Mark Drakeford has announced that as part of the latest review of the lockdown here, from Monday changes will be made to rules around seeing family and friends.

We are still being urged to stay at home as much as possible but from Monday in addition to the existing reasons to leave such as essential shopping and work, we can:

Meet with members of another household outdoors, in our local area.

So in theory this could mean meeting family in a local park, or having friends visit you in your own garden, so long as nobody has travelled far.

Social distancing should still be observed with two metres between members of different households, and good hand hygiene observed.

The First Minister has also commented that while this is something we are now allowed to do, we should still be trying to stay at home as much as we can.

He says the new message is "stay local to keep Wales safe".

What does local mean?

Five miles has been recommended as the maximum distance to travel.

However the Welsh Government say this is just a guide and that people should exercise judgement as to what is considered local depending on the sort of area they live in.

Ministers have suggested they do not want to disadvantage people living in more rural areas - but that the guidance is designed to limit the risk of transferring the virus from one are to another.

Where can people meet?

We can meet in outdoor spaces, which include people's private gardens or yards - but we're being reminded to be careful if that means passing through someone's house to access it.

Many of Wales' beauty spots remain closed as they have been since the start of lockdown.

Is there a limit to the number of people we can meet?

These meetings should be between two households at a time, but there is no limit on the number of people in each of those households who can meet.

There is no limit to the number of households you can meet on different occasions - so you could meet with one household of family and friends on one day, and a separate set of friends on family another time.

Can we now sunbathe in parks or at the beach?

The First Minister also confirmed that under these new rules, so long as people were only travelling locally, lying down to sunbathe in a local park or on a local beach would be acceptable, so long as social distancing is observed.

What else may be easing soon?

The First Minister has also indicated that he is hoping to give a go-ahead for non-essential retail stores to reopen in Wales as part of the next review on the 18th of June and that these businesses could begin preparing how they might open safely.