Millions of people will go back to work from June 15 as the government allows shops across England to reopen.
Shoe shops, clothes outlets, bookshops, electronics and indoor markets will all be allowed to open their doors from June 15.
And car showrooms and outdoor markets are being given an earlier date of June 1.
But all hospitality venues – from pubs, clubs and cafes to cinemas, theatres and bowling alleys – remain shut.
The changes set out today apply to England only, with Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland set to announce their own plans in the coming weeks.
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Shops have been told to “consider” placing a poster in their windows to demonstrate awareness of the guidance and commitment to safety measures.
They’ve also been advised to store returned items for 72 hours before putting them back out on the shop floor.
Protective coverings could be put on large items touched by the public such as beds or sofas.
And “frequent cleaning” of self-checkouts, trolleys, coffee machines and betting terminals is advised.
Some will fear the returns are too soon and some shop staff will not be safe.
The government insists the dates here are not final, and could be put back if the virus spikes.
- Outdoor markets
- Car showrooms
This will happen from June 1 onwards, “as soon as they are able to meet the COVID-19 secure guidelines to protect shoppers and workers.”
ALL other non-essential retail can reopen from this date including (but not limited to):
- Clothes shops
- Shoe shops
- Toy shops
- Furniture shops
- Auction houses
- Photography studios
- Indoor markets
These will “be expected to be able to reopen from 15 June if the Government’s five tests are met and they follow the COVID-19 secure guidelines, giving them three weeks to prepare.”
What will remain closed?
The announcement did not include any venues in the hospitality or leisure sector.
These will stay shut until at least July 4, and in some cases possibly much later.
When they do reopen it may only be partially.
Places that remain shut, apart from a few exceptions like takeaways or hospital canteens include:
- Restaurants, bars and pubs
- Cafes and canteens
- Hairdressers, barbers, beauty and nail salons
- Piercing and tattoo parlours
- Holiday accommodation including hotels, hostels, B&Bs, holiday rentals, campsites and boarding houses
- Caravan parks/sites for commercial uses
Places of worship
Museums and galleries
Cinemas, theatres and concert halls
Bingo halls, casinos and betting shops
Spas and massage parlours
Indoor fitness studios, gyms, swimming pools or other indoor leisure centres
Indoor arcades, bowling alleys, soft play centres and similar facilities
Playgrounds, outdoor gyms and outdoor swimming pools