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Prime Minister sets out timeline for easing of restrictions in England with advice for boaters and marine industry expected imminently

Published on: 25 February 2021

shutterstock_1923164111 25.02

Earlier this week the Prime Minister set out details of when further restrictions are likely to be eased across England.

The lifting of restrictions is expected to happen in four separate steps. England will only move into the next step if the following tests are satisfied.

The four tests are:

  • The vaccine deployment programme continues successfully.
  • Evidence shows vaccines are sufficiently effective in reducing hospitalisations and deaths in those vaccinated.
  • Infection rates do not risk a surge in hospitalisations which would put unsustainable pressure on the NHS.
  • The risk is not fundamentally changed by new variants of the virus. 

Details of the four stages are as follows:

Step 1:

8 March: People can meet one other person in public spaces for outdoor recreation in addition to exercise. However, for persons which are clinically vulnerable the advice is to remain at home until the end of March.

29 March: The rule of six will return outdoors, including in private gardens. In addition to this, two households of any size will also be allowed to meet outside.

Outdoor sports facilities will reopen and people will no longer be legally required to stay at home, but should still work from home where possible.

Step 2 will begin no earlier than 12 April

This and subsequent steps could be delayed based on the data.

However, assuming the four tests are met:

Non-essential retail will reopen; and indoor leisure facilities such as gyms will reopen. Holiday lets may resume – provided they are used for individuals or a single household.

Outdoor restaurants can open.

Step 3 will begin no earlier than 17 May 

Most restrictions on meeting outdoors will be lifted, subject to a limit of 30 being imposed. Six persons will be able to meet indoors from this date.

Pubs and restaurants will be reopened indoors, as well as hostels, hotels, and B&Bs. Theatres and concert halls will reopen, and the Government will pilot larger events using enhanced testing.

Step 4 will begin no earlier than 21 June


We understand that the Government's ambition is to remove all legal limits on social contact and on weddings and other larger events from this date. 

We also understand that further support will be announced in the Chancellor’s Budget on Wednesday 3 March and we will issue an update to our members as soon as we are able to.

For further information on the statement, please click here. 

British Marine can advise its members that it has today held discussions with Government officials and is expecting advice to be released imminently. This advice will set the out what types of boating activity can resume on inland and coastal waters and when.

Members can keep up to date with the latest information by visiting our dedicated Coronavirus Hub