Prime Minister outlines plans to reopen businesses

In a press conference on Monday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has outlined dates for the reopening of organisations as lockdown measures continue to be eased, which apply to England.

Brois Johnson has outlined that the below businesses are all set to reopen over the next few weeks, subject to the rate of infection remaining low. All businesses on the below list will only be able to reopen once they can demonstrate that they are COVID-secure, in line with government guidelines, and will keep customers safe. They will also need to undertake a risk assessment in consultation with trade unions/employee representatives.  

To assist businesses in reopening, the government is publishing updated COVID-secure guidance for those who work in shops, branches or stores. As part of this guidance, shops are being asked to consider the following:

  • placing a poster in their windows to demonstrate both awareness of government guidance and commitment to health and safety measures
  • storing returned items for 72 hours before putting them back on the shop floor
  • putting protective coverings on large items touched by the public
  • frequently cleaning objects and surfaces touched regularly.

‘Tough’ powers are to be in place for organisations which do not take steps to protect both staff and customers, which include fines and jail sentences of up to two years.

Please note that the below applies to England only. 

From 1 June

Outdoor markets and car showrooms will be able to reopen. This is due to the fact that the virus does not spread as severely outdoors as there is more space for people to distance.

It was also recently confirmed that schools will reopen on a phased return for pupils in Reception, Year One and Year Six.

From 15 June

All other non-essential retail outlets can reopen, such as –

  • clothes
  • shoes
  • toys
  • furniture
  • books
  • electronics
  • tailors
  • auction houses
  • photography studios
  • indoor markets.

Up to a quarter of pupils in Year 10 and Year 12 will be allowed ‘some contact’ to help prepare for exams.

From July

Hospitality venues and other public places are to remain closed for now, with previous commentary suggesting they will reopen in July subject to the rate of community infection.  This includes:

  • pubs and restaurants
  • hairdressers
  • nail bars.
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