Welsh Government lifts coronavirus restrictions in ‘common-sense approach’

By Rebecca Weller

- Last updated on GMT

"Common-sense approach": Welsh Government to lift coronavirus restrictions from Saturday 15 January (Credit: Getty/ Aja Koska)
"Common-sense approach": Welsh Government to lift coronavirus restrictions from Saturday 15 January (Credit: Getty/ Aja Koska)

Related tags Wales coronavirus Health and safety

Welsh First Minister Mark Drakeford has announced a four-step plan to ease coronavirus restrictions in Wales from Saturday (15 January).

Providing cases remain low, all restrictions on hospitality businesses, including pubs, nightclubs, cinemas, and theatres, will be lifted from 28 January, however, Covid passes will be required.

From Saturday (15 January), the number of people allowed to attend outdoor events will rise from 50 to 500 and from Friday 21 January, crowds will be permitted to return to sporting events with no limits on outdoor events, meaning fans are likely to be able to attend the Welsh Six Nations Rugby matches as planned.

Relief has come at a cost 

Night-Time Industries Association (NTIA) CEO Michael Kill said: “Finally a common-sense approach from the Welsh Government.

“Following intense campaigning from the industry and trade bodies we have put an end to the uncertainty.

“While we are relieved, we finally have clarity on the Welsh Government’s intentions, it has come at a cost to businesses, staff and supply chain.

“It is difficult to accept we remain subject to Covid passes for nightclubs in Wales. They were sold as the solution to nightclubs and similar settings remaining open, and that they are an effective way of managing transmission within these environments.

“It is clear from the period of closure and restrictions this is not the case; it is also clear there is no evidence base that has been presented by Welsh Government to support this decision.

Pleas to withdraw nightclub restrictions 

“I would urge the Welsh Government to realise the farcical basis of this mitigation, with no scientific evidence or data to support it, and end it in line with the date that restrictions for nightclubs are withdrawn on the 28th January.

“This policy seems only to have exacerbated market distortion, segregation, impact on trade and compromise staff and customer safety.”

The final step in the four-stage plan is expected to see Wales returns to a three-week review cycle with the alert level returning to 0 from Thursday 10 February. 

MORE TO FOLLOW – Drakeford is due to announce more details at lunchtime on Friday (14 January).

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