Covid-19 Roadmap to easing restrictions

Delta variant in Lancashire

Lancashire is receiving a package of enhanced support – including surge testing and increased vaccinations –  as cases of the Delta variant, are continuing to rise across Lancashire. 

Everyone in Lancashire (excluding Blackpool) should: 

Vaccination and regular testing will help us to turn things around in Lancashire. 

Step 4 of the Roadmap

Step 4 of the government's four-step roadmap is now in place.

  • Government has removed all legal limits on social contact.
  • Nightclubs are able to reopen
  • Larger events can take place
  • There are no legal limit on life events

See full details of the government's roadmap.

Step 1: The following restrictions were eased from 8 March  

  • All children and students returned safely to face-to-face education in schools and colleges from 8 March. Find out what you need to know about students returning to school and college.
  • Childcare and children’s supervised activities resumed to enable parents to work or engage in similar activities.
  • Twice-weekly rapid testing has been introduced for secondary and college pupils - in addition to regular testing for all teachers - to reduce the chance of the virus spreading in schools.
  • Higher Education students at English universities on practical courses returned.
  • People have been allowed to leave home for recreation and exercise outdoors with their household or support bubble, or with one person from outside their household.
  • Care home residents have been allowed one regular visitor.

From 29 March 

We are now in phase 2 of step 1 in the government's roadmap, meaning that in addition to the above, the following restrictions will be eased.

  • Outdoor gatherings (including in private gardens) of either 6 people (the Rule of 6) or 2 households will be allowed, making it easier for friends and families to meet outside.
  • Outdoor sports facilities such as tennis and basketball courts, and open-air swimming pools, will be allowed to reopen, and people will be able to take part in formally organised outdoor sports.

The ‘stay at home’ rule will end on 29 March but many restrictions will remain in place.

  • People should continue to work from home where they can and minimise the number of journeys they make where possible, avoiding travel at the busiest times and routes.
  • Travel abroad will continue to be prohibited, other than for a small number of permitted reasons.
  • Holidays abroad will not be allowed, given it will remain important to manage the risk of imported variants and protect the vaccination programme. 

Step 2: The following restrictions were eased on 12 April

  • The opening of non-essential retail; personal care premises such as hairdressers and nail salons; and public buildings, including libraries and community centres.
  • Indoor leisure facilities such as gyms will reopen (but only for use by people on their own or in household groups);
  • Most outdoor attractions and settings including outdoor hospitality venues, zoos, theme parks, and drive-in cinemas will open.
  • Self-contained accommodation such as campsites and holiday lets, where indoor facilities are not shared with other households, can also reopen.
  • Hospitality venues will be allowed to serve people outdoors at Step 2 and there will be no need for customers to order a substantial meal with alcoholic drinks and no curfew, although customers must order, eat and drink while seated (‘table service’).
  • Wider social contact rules will apply in all these settings to prevent indoor mixing between different households.
  • While funerals can continue with up to 30 mourners, the number of people able to attend weddings, receptions and commemorative events such as wakes will rise to 15.

Step 3: On 17 May there was further easing of restrictions, as follows

  • Government will look to continue easing limits on seeing friends and family wherever possible, allowing people to decide on the appropriate level of risk for their circumstances.
  • This means that most legal restrictions on meeting others outdoors will be lifted - although gatherings of over 30 people will remain illegal.
  • Indoors, the Rule of 6 or 2 households will apply - this will be kept under review.
  • As soon as possible and by no later than Step 3, government will update the advice on social distancing between friends and family, including hugging. But until this point, people should continue to keep their distance from anyone not in their household or support bubble.
  • Most businesses in all but the highest risk sectors will be able to reopen.
  • In all sectors, COVID-Secure guidance will remain in place and businesses may not cater for groups bigger than the legal limits.
  • Indoor hospitality will reopen - and as in Step 2, venues will not have to serve a substantial meal with alcoholic drinks; nor will there be a curfew. Customers will, however, have to order, eat and drink while seated.

Other indoor locations to open up in Step 3 include

  • Indoor entertainment venues such as cinemas and children’s play areas; the rest of the accommodation sector, including hotels, hostels and B&Bs; and indoor adult group sports and exercise classes.
  • The government will also allow some larger performances and sporting events in indoor venues with a capacity of 1,000 people or half-full (whichever is a lower number), and in outdoor venues with a capacity of 4,000 people or half-full (whichever is a lower number).
  • In the largest outdoor seated venues, where crowds can be spread out, up to 10,000 people will be able to attend (or a quarter-full, whichever is lower).
  • Up to 30 people will be able to attend weddings, receptions and wakes, as well as funerals. This limit will also apply to other types of significant life events including bar mitzvahs and christenings.