Stay home lockdown message 'to be ditched by March with outdoor sports allowed'


The government is set to ditch its ‘stay at home’ lockdown messaging, according to reports.

Officials are reportedly looking to scrap the slogan: ‘Stay home, Protect the NHS, Save lives’.

It is said to be getting set to encourage more small outdoor gatherings – and even sports – within weeks.

It had previously been speculated outdoor sports could return before the end of March.

Pupils are set to return to classrooms on March 8, on what is tipped to be the first step toward an eventual lockdown easing.

In recent days Boris Johnson said he hoped England’s third lockdown will be its last, as months of restrictions and the ongoing vaccination rollout takes effect.

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People wearing face masks take part in the Clap for Heroes campaign outside the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital
People could be encouraged to meet outdoors again

The PM has said he aims to cautiously ease coronavirus restrictions in an “irreversible” manner, but conceded he cannot offer a “cast iron guarantee” that lockdown will never return due to the virus’ constant mutations.

Tory backbenchers have been calling for an end to the lockdown as soon as all priority groups are vaccinated as the number who have received a first dose passes 15million.

Over the weekend, it was speculated that the return of outdoor gatherings including sports could come in the weeks after schools reopen.

The Mail Online reported today that Government sources say one of the PM’s top priorities is to allow more outdoor pursuits “to kickstart the health of the nation.”

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Police patrol at Stamford Bridge, London, during the winter lockdown
Coronavirus lockdown rules currently ban leaving the house for non-essential reasons

Social gatherings outdoors have been banned for months in England, with exercise with one person from another household the only exemption.

Coronavirus laws state people can only leave their homes for a limited number of reasons, such as to work, buy essentials or exercise.

The PM has not said exactly how he will ease lockdown yet, with the March 8 schools reopening plan the only date currently confirmed.

However he said he will set out key dates for the re-opening of retail and hospitality next week.

Outdoor activity is widely expected to be allowed first, which would permit sports such as golf and tennis, as well as some limited social gatherings outside by the end of March, earlier reports said.





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