News 9 May 2021

Ban on hugging to be lifted in next stage of roadmap out of lockdown

9 May 2021

As promised, Boris Johnson has continued to follow his roadmap out of lockdown and the next step will see the ban on hugging lifted.

Hugging along with other forms of intimate contact between friends and family outside of individual households will be allowed again under the easing of lockdown plans announced by the Prime Minister back in February.

From the 17th of May, people will also be able to visit indoor pubs, restaurants, cinemas, B&Bs and hotels.

Fans will also be allowed back at sporting events up to a capacity of 10,000 and the mixing of different households will once again be allowed indoors.

Groups of 30 will be allowed to mix and meet outdoors and up to 30 people will also be allowed at weddings, funerals and christenings.

Staying overnight at the home of someone not in your bubble will also resume along with foreign holidays to a curated list of safe green list locations as announced by the Transport Secretary.

Those travelling to green list countries will not have to quarantine on their return to England but all who travel will be subject to a number of Covid-19 screening tests.

Speaking today, Michael Gove said “Without prejudice to a broader review of social distancing, it is also the case that friendly contact, intimate contact, between friends and family is something that we want to see restored.”

On the matter, Professor Noakes of SAGE said that the people we hug should be kept to a small and exclusive selection of people.

Professor Noakes said, “I think don’t hug too frequently, keep it short, try and avoid being face to face, so perhaps turn your face away slightly, and even wearing a mask could help.

“We still need to be a bit cautious for a while yet. We’ve come a long way with this. The virus, although it’s now very low prevalence, hasn’t gone away.”