Adults living alone or single parents with children aged under 18 will be able to form ‘household’ bubbles from this weekend.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson revealed the latest relaxation at the government’s public briefing today (June 10).
He said: “I know how difficult the last months have been for those who have been cut off from friends and family. Last Monday we relaxed the rules on meeting outside in groups of six, still social distancing, but there are still too many people, particularly those who live by themselves, who are lonely and struggling.
“Single adult households or single parents with children under 18 can form a support bubble with one other household. All those in a support bubble will be able to act as if they live in the same household. They can be in each other’s homes and do not need to be two metres apart.”
The PM said this must be an exclusive arrangement, meaning support bubbles cannot be swapped for different households and that the relaxation does not apply to any other groups, meaning going into another home is still illegal for anyone not living on their own or who is not a single parent with children under 18.
The support bubble would also allow staying overnight. The relaxation does not apply to those who are shielded although further announcements are due to be made next week.
The PM also announced all shops will be able to open from Monday (June 15) as long as covid secure measures are in place, as will zoos and attractions such as drive-in cinemas and safaris.
The PM also said because the R rate – the rate of infection from a carrier to others – was “not yet quite low enough” plans for all primary pupils to be back at school before the summer holidays had been ditched. Instead the aim is the bring all pupils back to school by September “providing the progress we are making continues.”
Step 3 of the recovery ‘roadmap,’ which would include the opening of pubs and leisure centres, hospitality, hairdressers, nail bars and beauty salons, will not be implemented before July 4.