All the lockdown restrictions set to end in England on 19 July Freedom Day

Monday, 5th July 2021, 11:59 am
A raft of freedoms are set to be restored in England on 19 July (Photo: Getty Images)

The Prime Minister is due to confirm plans for lifting all remaining coronavirus restrictions in England today (5 July) for the final stage of the lockdown roadmap.

The country looks on track to see the final raft of measures removed as planned on 19 July as freedoms are restored.

Mr Johnson is expected to tell the public that the country must “begin to live with this virus” and it will be left to their own “judgement” to manage the Covid-19 risk from the so-called ‘Freedom Day’ onwards.

But what rules are set to change from 19 July? Here’s what you need to know.

Will I still have to wear a face mask?

It is expected that wearing face masks will become voluntary from 19 July in England, except when in hospitals and other health facilities.

As such, this will mean commuters will no longer have to wear masks on public transport, while those visiting pubs, restaurants, theatres, cinemas and other indoor venues will not be required by law to cover up.

Although people may still be encouraged to use face coverings in some enclosed spaces where there is close contact with others.

Will social distancing rules change?

The one-metre plus social distancing requirement is also expected to be scrapped from 19 July.

This means that drinking at the bar will return, removing the rule of table service only, and capacity limits should be scrapped in hospitality and indoor entertainment venues, meaning customers will no longer have to sit apart in the likes of cinemas and theatres.

Customers will also no longer have to scan a QR code to check-in to various venues using the NHS Covid app, or hand over their contact details. Although people will have the option of continuing to do so if they choose.

Will I still have to work from home?

Working from home guidance is set to be scrapped in England on 19 July, but it will be left up to employers and staff to decide if and when a return to offices will take place.

The government is not launching a campaign encouraging people to go back to their place of work and it is expected that there will be a phased return for many workers.

What about Test and Trace?

People in England who have received two Covid-19 vaccine doses should soon no longer have to self-isolate at home for 10 days if they come into contact with someone who tests positive for the virus.

Instead, people will be offered lateral flow tests to take at home, although this will not be compulsory.

This change may come into force on 19 July, although an official date has not yet been confirmed.

Will schools still have to isolate?

The government is planning to change isolation rules in schools after whole class ‘bubbles’ have been sent home if just one pupil tests positive for covid-19.

Instead of forcing the entire bubble to self-isolate, those who have been in contact with a positive case are expected to be given daily tests to help manage outbreaks.

What about holidays?

People who have received two Covid-19 vaccine doses will soon see quarantine rules scrapped.

This means that fully vaccinated Brits will avoid having to self-isolate for 10 days after returning to England from amber list countries, which currently includes several popular holiday spots.

A date for the rule change has not been confirmed, but it is hoped it may be in place by the end of July or early August, in time for the start of the summer holidays.