The First Minister of Wales, Mark Drakeford, set out a series of measures that will take Wales fully into Alert Level 3 by 17th May, subject to public health conditions remaining favourable.
The First Minister again set out the priority placed on ensuring all children and students in Wales will return to face-to-face education on Monday 12th April.
All remaining non-essential retail and close contact services will be allowed to reopen from Monday 12th April, while the rules will also be changed to allow travel into and out of Wales from the rest of the United Kingdom and Common Travel Area. Changes remain subject to public health conditions continuing to remain favourable.
The Welsh Government is also signalling further changes it aims to confirm at the 22nd April review, subject to public health conditions and final confirmation by Ministers, which would see outdoor attractions and outdoor hospitality reopen, including at cafes, pubs and restaurants on Monday 26th April.
By early May, plans include allowing organised outdoor activities for up to 30 people to take place, and for gyms, leisure centres and fitness facilities to reopen for individual or one-to-one training but not exercise classes.
The changes continue the Welsh Government’s planned, step-by-step approach to relaxing the coronavirus restrictions, taking account of the highly-infectious Kent variant, which is now the dominant form of the virus in Wales.
The public health situation in Wales continues to improve. The number of cases of coronavirus in our communities is generally falling and pressure on the NHS is easing.
“Thanks to a real team effort across Wales, coronavirus cases remain stable, and the vaccination programme continues apace. As a result, the Welsh Government has the headroom to continue its careful, step-by-step approach to relaxing restrictions.
The review we have concluded this week, means we can continue with our programme of further re-opening of the economy and loosening the restrictions in place.”
– First Minister, Mark Drakeford
Should public health conditions remain favourable, from Monday 12th April, the following relaxations can go ahead:
- The full return of children to schools for face-to-face education, all post-16 learners will return to further education and training centres, and university campus’ will be able to open for blended face-to-face/online learning for all students;
- All remaining shops can reopen, completing the phased reopening of non-essential retail;
- All remaining close contact services can open, including mobile services;
- Travel restrictions on traveling into and out of Wales will be lifted. However, restrictions on travel to countries outside the Common Travel Area without a reasonable excuse, remain in place. The Common Travel Area means the United Kingdom, the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man and the Republic of Ireland;
- Viewings at wedding venues can resume by appointment;
- Outdoor canvassing for elections can begin.
For more information, visit the Welsh Government website here.