At 7pm last night Boris Johnson addressed the nation on how the lockdown may be lifted. Whilst the Prime Minister regularly stated that any easing of restrictions would be at a snail’s pace, announcements were made that will give some reassurance to businesses who have been at a standstill since the 23rd March 2020.
Further and more detailed, published guidance is expected at 2pm this afternoon, however, from the broadcast last night we can take away the following:
- From Wednesday 13th May, anyone who can’t work from home will be actively encouraged to go to work; this will largely affect the construction and property industries. Where possible they should avoid public transport and maintain social distancing. The government has confirmed they are working on guidance for employers on how to make their workplaces “COVID-Secure”.
- Schools and universities are expected to open in stages, but not until 1st June 2020 at the earliest. The Prime Minister stated that it was the Government’s hope that they will be able to give some secondary school pupils time with their teachers ahead of their exams next year.
- There will be a phased reopening of shops (other than essential outlets that have remained open) from 1st June at the earliest and provided that strict social distancing rules can be followed.
We will provide a further update once the government’s official guidance has been published.