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Prime minister Boris Johnson has revealed Government’s four-stage plan to release England from lockdown, with outdoor events such as drive-in cinema shows running from 12 April prior to the reopening of major venues such as stadiums on 17 May, and full-capacity events from 21 June.

The Government has announced that May 17 could see the return of outdoor events with audience capacities of up to 10,000 in seated venues, or 25% of a venue’s capacity – whichever is lower. Outdoor events with audiences of up to 4,000 or 50% of a venue’s capacity, whichever is lower, could also be allowed.

Indoor events for up to 1,000 people will be green lit as long as the audience is no larger than 50% of a venue’s capacity.

Johnson said, “We will also re-open pubs and restaurants indoors, along with cinemas and hotels. Turnstiles of sports stadia will once again rotate, subject to capacity limits depending on the size of the venue.”

The fourth and final stage would, subject to review, see the re-opening of nightclubs and the return of larger events, with no audience limit, on 21 June.

Johnson said, “With appropriate mitigations, we will remove all limits on social contact, and on weddings and other live events. We will re-open everything up to and including nightclubs and large events such as theatre performances, above the limits of stage three, potentially using testing to reduce risk of infection.”

Johnson said Government will undertake a series of reviews, including piloting the impact of testing and reduced social distancing on events.

The prime minister said Government will maintain the “various support packages” for impacted businesses throughout the period of restrictions: “We will not pull the rug out for the duration of the pandemic, the Government will continue to do whatever it takes to protect jobs and livelihoods across the UK and the chancellor will set out further details in the budget next Wednesday.”

The Four Stages

The Four Tests