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How are the Covid19 Lockdown rules changing on Monday, 17th May?

on Sat, 15/05/2021 - 3:54pm

Monday, 17th May 2021 brings stage 3 of the lifting of lockdown.

Our actions are having an impact, but the risks, particularly of variants, remain.

Following the rules and remembering hands, face, space and fresh air, as well as twice-weekly testing, even if you don’t have symptoms, is now more important than ever.

Social contact

  • New guidance on social distancing when meeting friends and family (click) enables physical contact such as hugs but also encourages personal choice and responsibility. The fewer people you touch and interact with, the better.
  • You can socialise indoors in a group of up to six people or two households, including for overnight stays. Each household can include a support bubble, if eligible.
  • Up to 30 people can meet outside.
  • Up to five named visitors (two at any one time) can visit care home residents, providing visitors test negative for COVID-19.
  • Support groups and parent and child group gathering limits will increase to 30 people (not including under 5s)


  • Indoor hospitality venues such as restaurants, pubs, bars and cafes can open.
  • Indoor entertainment and attractions such as cinemas, theatres, concert halls, bowling alleys, casinos, amusement arcades, museums and children’s indoor play areas can open.
  • Hotels, hostels and B&Bs can open for groups of up to six people or two households (each household can include a support bubble, if eligible).
  • People will be able to attend indoor and outdoor events, including live performances, sporting and business events. Attendance will be capped.

Work and education

  • All school children should be at school.
  • Face coverings will no longer be needed in classrooms or for students in communal areas in secondary schools and colleges. Twice weekly home testing (click) should be continued to control infection rates.
  • All higher education students will be able to access in-person teaching.
  • You should continue to work from home if you can.


  • International travel will be permitted but a traffic light system will be in place, and depending on where you return from different rules will apply (click).  


  • Organised indoor sport will be able to take place for all (this includes gym classes).

Major life events

  • Funeral attendance will no longer be limited to 30 people but will be determined by how many people the COVID-secure venue can safely accommodate with social distancing.
  • Weddings, wakes, bar/bat mitzvahs, christenings and other commemorative events can take place with up to 30 people.

Read a full list of the restrictions on GOV.UK (click)