What does Britain expect? Casinos and bowling alleys open within 14 days, wedding receptions for 30 people and hugs in time for Christmas (but nightclubs remain closed)
- Prime Minister Boris Johnson has set an optimistic vision to abandon social distancing
- Top scientists poured cold water on the idea that life could soon return to normal
- Professor Chris Whitty said social distancing exists "for a long period of time".
Boris Johnson's plan to get England back to normal by Christmas was in chaos last night.
The Prime Minister yesterday set out an optimistic vision to abolish the rules of social distancing in November.
He insisted that "planning the worst but hoping for the best" was right, as he suggested that all restrictions could be lifted in time for Christmas.
But just a few hours later, his top scientists – who did not come to him for his press conference on Downing Street – poured cold water on the idea that life could return to normal within months.
The Chief Medical Officer of England, Professor Chris Whitty, said that social distancing measures are likely to be necessary "for a long time".
From the beginning of next month, bowling alleys, ice rinks and casinos will reopen
Sir Patrick Vallance, the government's primary scientific advisor, warned that there is a “high likelihood” of a second wave of infections this winter.
Mr Johnson also faced allegations last night that he was spreading confusion by imposing an obligation on employers to decide when to return employees to offices.
When he presented his roadmap to end the blockade yesterday, Mr. Johnson was hoping for a "more significant return to normality by November".
Curtain for theater
The live theater can return from August 1st. Sports events follow in October.
Indoor performances are allowed as long as the audience is socially distant.
Jon Morgan, director of the Theaters Trust, said that most venues would need to occupy 70 percent of the seats to break even.
And sports fans could return to the stadiums in England in October.
Pilot events will take place at two county cricket games, including Surrey v Middlesex at The Oval from July 26-27.
The Snooker World Championship at Sheffield & # 39; s Crucible Theater on July 31st and the Glorious Goodwood Horse Racing Festival on August 1st are also pilots.
The Prime Minister said it was his "strong and sincere hope" that the social distance in England would end in time for Christmas, while he suggested that closer contact between families could be allowed earlier.
From the beginning of next month, bowling alleys, ice rinks and casinos can be reopened.
He also paved the way for theaters to give live performances next month and for sports stadiums to welcome viewers back in October when the exams are successful.
Mr Johnson also immediately dismissed the advice to avoid public transport in England.
He committed to a new goal to reach the capacity for 500,000 coronavirus tests per day by November.
At his press conference, the prime minister admitted that "the virus may be more virulent in the winter months."
But he added: “Even if we plan the worst, I firmly believe that we should hope for the best.
"That means looking ahead with optimism and now expanding our plan to lift the remaining national measures … so we can go back to something closer to normal life."
Mr. Johnson said Sir Patrick and Professor Whitty had participated in a cabinet discussion before the easing was announced, but added, "Ultimately, the choices are made by the elected politicians."
The two scientific advisers who appeared before the Lords Science Committee last night raised concerns about how infections could get worse.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson yesterday set out an optimistic vision to abolish the rules of social distancing in November
Sir Patrick said it was "inevitable" that the relaxation of the social distancing measures would lead to a recurrence of the cases and that further national closures may be necessary. Professor Whitty told the committee that social distancing “remains an important part of the mix of measures”.
Business leaders and unions called for clarity after Mr Johnson said it was up to employers to talk to employees about who should work from home.
British Chamber of Commerce Director General Adam Marshall said "crystal-clear" guidance was needed, while CBI Deputy Director General Josh Hardie called for "clarity and consistency".
Frances O’Grady from TUC said, "The government is giving the money for it."
■ Town halls and ministers have been given the authority to impose “lightning barriers” to eradicate local outbreaks. Mr. Johnson said the councils did not need to contact the government to close factories or other premises, and could cancel events and close outside areas. He also announced draconian powers for ministers, including the ban on people leaving an area that is closed.
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