Government Expected To Announce That Households Can Mix Over Festive Period
The government is expected to confirm that a small number of households will be allowed to 'bubble up' over the festive period.
It is believed that the households will have to choose who they're spending time with in advance and once this is done, they will be allowed to be indoors together - including going to the pub.
Michael Gove, the Cabinet Minister, said that there would be 'limited additional household bubbling for a small number of days'.
A statement from the Cabinet Office said: "Ministers reiterated the importance of allowing families and friends to meet in a careful and limited way, while recognising that this will not be a normal festive period and the risks of transmission remain very real.
"As such, Ministers endorsed a shared objective of facilitating some limited additional household bubbling for a small number of days, but also emphasised that the public will be advised to remain cautious, and that wherever possible people should avoid travelling and minimise social contact.
"In respect of Northern Ireland, Ministers also recognised that people will want to see family and friends across the island of Ireland, and this is the subject of discussions with the Irish Government."
He will outline plans in parliament, confirming that England will return to a regional three-tiered system.
The tiers will be more strict than prior to the lockdown and more regions will be placed in higher tiers.
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Johnson will also announce how people will be able to visit family at Christmas.
A No. 10 spokesperson said: "Everyone's efforts during the current national restrictions have helped bring the virus back under control, slowed its spread and eased pressures on the NHS.
"But the Prime Minister and his scientific advisors are clear the virus is still present - and without regional restrictions it could quickly run out of control again before vaccines and mass testing have had an effect.
"That would put in jeopardy the progress the country has made, and once again risk intolerable pressure on the NHS."
It's also expected that the PM will announce that pubs and restaurants will be allowed to stay open later once current lockdown restrictions are lifted.
Prior to the lockdown, pubs and restaurants had to have everyone out by 10pm; however, it is understood that last orders will be at 10pm and curfew will be pushed back to 11pm from 2 December, according to Sky News.
Asked on The Andrew Marr Show whether the 10pm curfew may be changed post-lockdown, chancellor Rishi Sunak said: "It's definitely something that we're looking at and I think, as I said, one of the things that we've been able to do as we've learned is get data, see what works and see where we can improve things.
"I think it's probably fair to say when we introduced the curfew, that was something that was in common with many other countries and cities around the world.
"As we've learnt more, there's opportunities for us to look and refine things, and that is one of the things on our list."
Featured Image Credit: PA
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