SHOPS and gyms are among the businesses that will reopen on December 2 once the England lockdown ends.
Earlier this week, Boris Johnson announced the national lockdown will come to an end next week as planned, but it’ll be replaced with strict new measures.
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The new tier system was announced today by Health Secretary Matt Hancock.
Under the current restrictions, people in England can only travel for essential reasons, while every non-essential business have been shut down.
Pubs and restaurants have also been forced to shut for dine-in, although they can still offer takeaway and delivery options.
The return to the three-tier structure is set to come into force from midnight on December 2, although the tiers have been strengthened with additional measures.
The system will then be in place until the spring, while scientists continue work on approving vaccines.
The rules will be reviewed every 14 days to check if they are working, and to see whether they can be relaxed.
Full list of businesses that can reopen on December 2
At the moment, only a handful of essential stores are allowed to stay open, such as supermarkets and pharmacies.
The businesses that will reopen on December 2 depends on where you live, with the tiers for different areas set to be announced on Thursday.
Below we explain which businesses will be allowed to welcome back customers again.
You can find out which businesses will stay closed following the new restrictions in our guide.
- Non-essential retailers, including clothing stores and toy shops
- Pubs, restaurants and bars – but only for takeaway, delivery or click and collect
- Gyms – although group exercise classes are banned
- Swimming pools and leisure centres
- Hairdressers and barbers
- Beauty salons
- Places of worship
In the old tier system which was in place during October, some tier 3 areas like Liverpool were forced to shut their gyms.
While other cities like Manchester were still allowed to keep fitness facilities open.
However, once lockdown ends, gyms will be allowed to stay open regardless of the tier.
On top of the above, pubs and bars can remain open in tier 2 for dine-in as long as they serve a substantial meal with any booze they sell.
The 10pm curfew has also been extended until 11pm.
In tier 2, casinos, cinemas, bowling alleys, theatres, soft play areas, museums and galleries can also open.
Most businesses are allowed to operate in tier 1 as long as they’re Covid-19 secure.
One of the few exceptions is nightclubs, which haven’t reopened since March.
Restaurants and pubs that are open for dine-in in tier 1 can only operate a table-service, so you won’t be able to order at the bar.
Which businesses have remained open during the lockdown?
THE following businesses have been allowed to stay open during the second coronavirus lockdown in England, so they’ll also continue to welcome back customers.
They’ve been allowed to remain open as they sell “essential” goods or services.
- Food retailers
- Convenience stores and corner shops
- Off licenses and licensed shops selling alcohol including breweries
- Pharmacies and chemists
- Hardware stores
- Building merchants and building services
- Petrol stations
- Car repair and MOT services
- Bicycle shops
- Taxi or vehicle hire businesses
- Building societies
- Credit unions
- Short term loan providers
- Savings clubs
- Cash points
- Currency exchanges
- Post offices
- Funeral directors
- Launderettes and dry cleaners
- Dental services
- Hearing services
- Mental health services
- Veterinary surgeons and pet shops
- Agricultural supplies shop
- Storage and distribution facilities
- Car parks
- Public toilets
- Garden centres
Following the announcement, Helen Dickinson, chief executive of the British Retail Consortium, said: “Retailers will be relieved by the government’s confirmation that all shops can reopen once the current restrictions are lifted.
“SAGE data has always highlighted that retail is a safe environment, and firms have spent hundreds of millions on safety measures.”
While Andrew Goodacre, chief executive of the British Independent Retailers Association (Bira), added they’re “delighted” that shops can reopen.
“The second lockdown has had a terrible impact on independent retail – potentially more than than the first one because it is such an important time on the retail calendar.
“Retailers will be ready and we hope that the town centres and local authorities will also have prepared to accommodate shoppers.”
What else did Boris Johnson announce?
Boris Johnson also announced:
Government officials are said to have a sense of renewed optimism over the success of vaccines, with one source claiming Chief Scientific Adviser Sir Patrick Vallance has a “spring in his step”.
No 10 is adamant recent positive news could mean restrictions are gradually wound down towards spring 2021.
Brits could also be given special ‘freedom passes’ to allow them to live a relatively normal life – if they have two negative Covid tests a week.