Wednesday, 21 Oct 2020

Wales lockdown: Is Wales still in lockdown? Can I travel to Wales now?

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The UK has faced months of lockdown rules, with shops and businesses closed, children unable to go to school and working from home becoming the new normal. As coronavirus cases have eased, so too have the lockdown measures – but this has differed across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

With coronavirus cases declining to a manageable level, and the all-important R-rate now below one, the UK has begun to restart ‘normal life’ as much as it can.

For many areas this has meant non-essential shops can open, plans for children to return to school are in place and Britons can begin to see loved ones.

Rules on wearing facemasks on public transport are still in force, as is the two-metre rule when meeting other people.

England’s rules have been relaxed quicker than its neighbours, with Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales easing restrictions at their own pace.

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Is Wales still in lockdown? Can I travel to Wales now?

The Welsh Government is continuing to ask residents to stay within their local area where possible, meaning travelling is currently not permitted.

In a written statement on the review of lockdown measures on June 19, Welsh First Minister Mark Drakeford advised people to “not be complacent”.

Mr Drakeford said: “Although the spread of infection is reducing, coronavirus still presents a threat to public health in Wales.

“We are therefore continuing to require people to stay in their local area unless they have a reasonable excuse to travel further, to only meet one other household outdoors and to require certain businesses, such as bars and restaurants, to remain closed for the time being.”

However, this may soon change as Mr Drakeford advised there would be a review to the requirement to stay local in the hopes of lifting the measure on July 6.

He said: “The current requirement to stay local and not generally travel more than five miles from home will, therefore, remain in place until that decision is made.

“I would urge local communities, local authorities and outdoor visitor attractions to use this period to prepare for reopening.

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“A final decision will be based on the latest scientific and medical evidence and advice and how the virus is behaving in Wales.”

Mr Drakeford added: “I really understand that if you are just the other side of a border, you will feel that this is rough justice, and other people are being able to do things that you can’t.”

However, travelling outside the local area to visit a loved one who needs help or to visit someone at a care home outdoors or at a youth offender institution,

This is permitted when visits are allowed on compassionate grounds.

In Wales, current guidelines on meeting state any number of people from across two households can meet, provided there is a two-metre distance, the location is within five miles of respective homes and is ideally outside.

Mr Drakeford said families should “think carefully” about how to see each other while behaving “responsibly”.

At the time of writing, cases of COVID-19 in Wales have reached 15,466, with deaths totalling 1,497.

In total 130,067 people have been tested for coronavirus in Wales, with 114,601 testing negative.

Here is a breakdown of current coronavirus cases across the United Kingdom:

  • England: 159,696
  • Northern Ireland: 4,874
  • Scotland: 15,802
  • Wales: 15,466

Source: Read Full Article

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